Chile suffered a five-year drought of equity offerings until last November when a bank with some big-name backers became the first Chilean company to launch an IPO since 1997. Corpbanca's IPO was just one of two IPOs in all of Latin America last year. Controlled by Chilean financier Alvaro Saieh and US private equity investors Hicks, Muse, Tate&Furst and JP Morgan Capital Partners, the bank pulled off a $150 million stock offering co-managed by local investment banks IM Trust and Consorcio Financiero. The deal required a large dose of investor education but showed that with a good story and a respected controlling investor, Latin American companies still can still raise money on the equity markets. LatinFinance has named the Corpbanca IPO the equity deal of the year for 2002.
Years of weak investor demand, high interest rates and disappointing valuations have...
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