What does History Tell Us?
On the morning of January 15, 2008, serpentine queues formed at every brokerage office with the line growing every hour. These lines were for one of India’s blockbuster IPOs, Reliance Power. Hopes were high. A line from one of IMDb’s highest-rated movies, The Shawshank Redemption, says “Hope is a good thing, may be the best of the things. And a good thing never dies.” However, as participants of the stock markets, we would do well to follow a William O’Neil quote that says “Personal opinions, feelings, hopes, and beliefs about the stock market are usually wrong and often dangerous. Facts and markets, on the other hand, are seldom wrong.” The application scenario during the Reliance IPO was different. An IPO would take three to four weeks to be listed. For example, the Reliance Power IPO was open from January 15 to January 18, 2008 and was listed on February 11. The new investors of today might be unaware about the process of filling out forms , issuing checks, seeing amounts debited, and even credited back, if not allotted – and all of these conducted offline. The current application supported by blocked amount (ASBA) system has improved efficiency manifold. The entire process is completed within a week and the amount is not debited unless the investor receives an allotment. IPOs in 2020 started in March, with SBI Card swiping in the primary market. Around the same time, the COVID-19 pandemic triggered the worst selloff in equity markets in more than a decade. With a V-shaped recovery in the market, major companies launched IPOs in Q2 FY21 to raise funds, which received very good response from investors. A few were subscribed 150 times and more. About 16 IPOs in 2020 set a base for more to come. In 2021 to date, 38 new IPOs have hit the market and another 20–25 are scheduled to make their debut. With the current frenzy around IPOs, there is concern that the market is heading to a crash. Will the current IPO frenzy lead to a crash? In the first eight months of 2021, 38 companies have filed for IPOs, with the cumulative issue size of these being estimated at Rs 62,763 crore. It is a common perception that too many IPOs will crash the market as liquidity is diverted from secondary markets to the primary markets. However, after the COVID-19 outbreak, central banks worldwide have been lowering interest rates and purchasing assets to alleviate the liquidity crunch in the market. Following cues from the global central banks, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) too lowered interest rates, to support the economy. However, during the pan demic, many small businesses shut down due to lockdowns, which prompts people o find alternate sources of income. There is where the stock market benefitted. The number of demat accounts opened between Decem ber 2019 and August 2021 has gone up by more than 70% to 6.9 crore. This has also brought liquidity pouring into IPOs. Apart from the 2008 IPO frenzy and the subsequent market crash, there is only one instance in the preceding graph that depicts an instance when too many IPOs have led to a market crash. In 2010, 66 companies came up with IPOs and the market rallied by 18% that year. However, Nifty50 corrected by 25% the following year. Make or break: Is it the number of IPOs or the issue size? In 2021, IPO issues have raised nearly Rs 62,700 crore, with this number still on the rise as more time passes. Only in 2017 was more money raised in the primary market. After the 2010 IPO frenzy, with companies raising more than Rs 36,000 crore, NIFTY50 gave returns of ~18% in the year. However, a correction of ~25% followed these gains. The fall of 2011 can be attributed to global factors such as the debt crisis in developed markets. The US Treasury credit rating was downgraded that year in addition to the European Central Bank (ECB) pledging to buy Spanish and Italian government bonds to save the Euro. These factors pushed the global markets into turmoil. Similar IPO frenzies and markets in 2017, 2020, and 2021 have delivered double-digit positive returns in those years. The Indian market has seen success ratios exceeding 90% in the past few years. For example, in 2010, when 66 companies filed for IPOs, only two companies held off. In 2021, all the companies filing IPOs got listed. A Deep Dive into IPO Performances across the Years A sample of three companies across 2015–2021 show us that the average returns for their IPOs was around 100%, but we would also look at the outliers accompanying these. For every Laurus Labs and D’Mart stock on the market, there is a Café Coffee Day. Compounding plays a major role with these gains, but do investors have the patience to hold on to a stock for that long? Laurus Labs remained stagnant for almost five years and then moved massively in 2020 and 2021.
Blast from the Past
Shying Away from Infosys Infosys launched its IPO in 1993, priced at Rs 95/share, which was undersubscribed. Financial services giant Morgan Stanley then bailed out the company by picking up 13% equity. The stock then listed at Rs 145, a listing gain of more than 52%. Infosys has announced 11 bonus issues and one stock split since inception. The company has never missed out on giving dividends since the start of 2000. Thus, Rs 9,500 invested in the IPO would now be worth over Rs 2 crore, along with Rs 20 lakh in dividends. Page Industries: Another One Bites the Dust Page Industries Limited is the exclusive licensee of Jockey International Inc. (USA) for India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Maldives. Jockey is not just a pioneer in the innerwear industry but has continued to influence worldwide markets for more than 130 years. Despite its strong brand name, the company has faced a fate simi lar to other IPOs released during that time. In February 2007, the stock listed at Rs 282/share, a discount of 22% to its issue price of Rs 360/share. Howev er, if at all someone was patient enough to have held on to the stock all these years, they would have gained more than 11,600% until date. Reliance Power and DLF in 2007–2008 DLF launched an IPO of Rs 9,200 in June 2007, when the benchmark indices were making highs and real estate stocks were making higher highs. Even in that market, DLF attracted comparatively few (3.5 times) bids. The stock shot up 36% in opening trade. DLF had become the eighth-most valuable company on its listing day. But that was it. The stock never came to that price again. The investors who took a position on it looking at its strong opening week lost their money. The other prominent IPO of that time, which was given the title of ‘biggest IPO ever’ in 2008, also disappointed investors. The Rs 11,560 crore issue was subscribed within the first few minutes of its book-building process. It attracted over 5M bids across categories, with an aggregate commitment of over Rs 7,50,000 crore. Howev er, the strong response to IPO did not guarantee big returns. The stock nosedived more than 15% on opening day. The rest was history. In 2020, the stock made a low of Rs 1.
Missed IPO is Not a Missed Opportunity
Companies making initial public offerings (IPO) draw a lot of investor attention. Some of the IPOs during 2021 have attracted a very high number of applications. But the shares are allotted to a few investors, and that also does not exceed Rs 15,000 in value. To cash in on the gains made by a newly listed stock, some investors, who don’t receive an allotment, try to buy it later or remain unsure about taking a position. At William O’Neil, we have a set of rules to take entry into a newly listed company. We advise investors not to buy a company’s shares on the day or during the week of its listing. For IPO stocks, there is no history of a price-volume action, so it is difficult to gauge the top. When it comes to investing in IPO stocks, new issues don't play by the usual rules. Look for a base formation after a listing. Firstly, there should be a massive gain as the stock goes public and before it runs down after hitting resistance. A classic IPO base is a short and shallow area of consolidation that occurs right after a company’s IPO. The Framework of a Good IPO Base is Simple: -The decline from a peak to low usually doesn't top 20%, but after a good gain on a listing day, the more volatile markets can have a decline of up to 50%. -The length of a base is often less than five weeks and can be as short as seven days. -On a listing day, the closing should be in the upper half of the day’s range. -During base formation, the stock price should not undercut the IPO price. -In an IPO base, the pattern should typically start within 25 days of the stock's first day of trading. -The standard pivot (entry point) is at the highest point on the left side from where a base pattern started to form. In addition to these points, the other important aspect is volume. At breakout, the volume should be very high, and accumulation should be good just before a breakout (on the right side of the base). However, the volume of the first two-three days generally tends to be very high and should not be set as a benchmark. The conviction becomes strong if the stock is among the leading industry groups. For India, we have 164 industry groups. Ideally, we prefer stocks among the top 40 industry group rank.
Key IPOs in FY22
Clean Science Technology
Company Overview Clean Science and Technology Limited (Clean Science) operates in the specialty chemicals space, manufactur ing products such as FMCG chemicals (4-MAP and Anisole), performance chemicals (MEHQ, BHA, and AP), and pharmaceutical intermediates (Guaiacol and DCC). The company has a robust distribution network in India as well as overseas. Export contributes around 69% to the company’s top line. It currently has two production facilities at Kurkumbh, Maharashtra with an installed production capacity of 29,900 MTPA. The IPO opened for subscription during July 7–9, 2021. It was oversubscribed 93.4 times, with the retail portion subscribed by nine times, the NII portion by 206.4 times, and the QIB portion by 156.4 times. It was listed on exchanges at a price of Rs 1,755 as on the listing day. Robust Financial Position The company’s total revenue from operations had a CAGR of 31.44% during 2018–20. Clean Science has reported ROCE of 36.61% in FY19, 50.75% in FY20, and 58.48% in FY21. Also, ROE stood strong at 26.03% in FY19, 35.90% in FY20, and 40.82% in FY21. Further, the company is holding net cash from operating activi ties of Rs 449.6M in FY19, Rs 847.4M in FY20, and Rs 1601.M in FY21. Products have Array of Applications Emission Restrictions in China to Become Key Tailwind for Indian Specialty
The Indian specialty chemicals industry is gradually slowing down due to various factors, the most prominent
among these being the introduction of stringent environmental norms. Tightening of restrictions have incrementally raised the operating costs involved in setting up new businesses and also led to several factory
closures in highly polluted areas, which have consequently dragged industrial production. Further, companies
had to reduce overall capacity due to the government’s restrictions on emissions. Additionally, the Chinese government mandated all small-to-mid-size chemical companies in China to move their operations to dedicated
special chemical parks, with all the largest plants to be compulsorily relocated by 2025. Further, uncertainties
caused by the pandemic are intensifying concerns in China’s specialty chemicals industry. This is a tailwind for
the global specialty chemicals industry and Clean Science is well-placed to gain from such opportunities.
Meanwhile, the Indian specialty chemicals sector enjoys other tailwinds such as the success of the Make in
India campaign and the government’s allowance of 100% foreign direct investment (FDI) in terms of competitive manufacturing costs, higher investments in R&D, availability of cheaper raw material and transport, strong
demand from end user segments, etc. Further, the focus of global manufacturing companies on reducing their
dependence on China in the backdrop of COVID-19 duly favors India’s specialty chemical companies. Strategically Located Manufacturing Facility
Clean Science has two certified production facilities in India, strategically located at Kurkumbh, Maharashtra.
The facilities are close to the JNPT port from where it exports the majority of products. Each facility has an
on-site R&D unit, quality control department, warehouse, and effluent treatment system, thus making them
zero-liquid-discharge facilities. These facilities had a combined installed capacity of 28,060 MTPA as of March
31, 2020 and 29,900 MTPA as of December 31, 2020. They had capacity utilization rates of 62.95% and
52.43% (unannualized) for FY20 and 9M CY20, respectively. Clean Science is currently setting up a third facility
near the others and is also in discussions with authorities to acquire land for the construction of a fourth facility
at the same place. Steady Focus on Strategic Process Innovation
Clean Science has commercialized the use of environment-friendly processes in manufacturing certain specialty chemicals at global capacities. The company’s focus on process innovation and consistent R&D, which are
deployed across process developments, are factors that have greatly helped improve its productivity and yields.
The company is among the largest global producers of certain specialty chemicals in terms of manufacturing
capacities. As of December 31, 2020, it had the following capacities: O’Neil Methodology
- The stock is currently forming a stage-one consolidation base in its daily chart and is trading around 9%
away from the crucial pivot point(1,779).
- The stock has an EPS Rank of 4.
- The stock has a RS Rating of 21 which is POOR indicating the underperformance as compared to other
- It has Group Rank of 44 indicates it belongs to a fair industry group of Chemicals-Specialty
Devyani International Limited (Devyani International) is a franchisee of Yum Brands in India and operates in the
quick service restaurant (QSR) space in India. The company had 655 stores across 155 cities in India as of
March 31, 2021 (696 stores across 166 cities as of June 30, 2021). Yum! Brands, Inc. operates brands such as
KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell and had a global presence with more than 50,000 restaurants in over 150 countries as of December 31, 2020. Further, Devyani International is a franchisee for the Costa Coffee brand and
stores in India.
The company is broadly divided into three verticals consisting of the core brands business, an international
business, and other business. The core brands business includes stores of KFC, Pizza Hut, and Costa Coffee
that operate in India. Similarly, the international business includes stores that operate outside India, primarily
comprising KFC and Pizza Hut stores operated in Nepal and Nigeria. Further, certain other operations in the
F&B industry, including stores of brands such as Vaango and Food Street are included under its other business
segment. Combined revenue from core brands business and its international business represented 83.01% of
revenue from operations in FY19, 82.94% in FY20, and 94.19% in FY21. Financial Position
Devyani International’s revenue from operations advanced 15.7% y/y to Rs 1,516.3 crore in FY20 crore from
1,310.6 crore in FY19. The figure stood at Rs 1,134.8 crore in FY21. Further, the company reported EBITDA of
Rs 278.9 crore in FY19 (EBITDA margin: 21.29%), Rs 255.4 crore in FY20 (16.85%), and Rs 226.9 crore in
FY21 (20.00%). Company has Portfolio of Recognized Global Brands
Devyani International operates franchises of various well-known global QSR brands and is the largest franchise
partner for Yum Brands in India. Its core brands include the following:
- KFC, a global chicken restaurant brand with over 25,000 restaurants in over 140 countries as of December
- Pizza Hut, the world’s largest restaurant chain specializing in ready-to-eat pizza products, operating in the
delivery, carryout, and casual dining segments worldwide with 17,639 restaurants as of December 31,
- Costa 128 Coffee, a global coffee chain with more than 3,400 coffee shops in 31 countries
- Also KFC and Pizza Hut in Nepal (non-exclusive sole franchisee) and KFC in Nigeria; franchisee for Costa
Coffee in India
Additionally, Devyani International owns and operates stores of certain other brands including Vaango, Food
Street, Masala Twist, Ile Bar, Amreli, and Ckrussh Juice Bar.Diverse Customer Base across Price Points
The company serves a range of customers across several price points. For example, for KFC, the company in
association with Yum, introduced innovative offerings as well as a distinct value proposition. These include KFC
Happy New Wednesdays, 4 Value Burgers starting at INR 69, Chicken Buckets starting at INR 199, Zinger
Tandoori Burger, Chicken Lollipops, and KFC Chizza. Additionally, customers for Pizza Hut span all age groups
and include children, young adults, and families. With Costa Coffee, the company offers several service formats,
including stores and kiosks. Benefits of Cross-brand Synergies
The company has expanded operations in the last few years, opening 111 stores under its core brands business in FY21 (72 stores in FY19; 50 in FY20). It was able to leverage substantial operating synergies across the
brands it operates. Its focus on achieving cost synergies has provided it an edge over the competition. Devyani
International has centralized its sourcing, warehousing, and distribution of raw materials for certain regions and
across its core brands business. This reduces the storage space required at stores, which in turn enables the
company to minimize store-operating costs. It is also able to win competitive rates for its raw materials, given
that it deals with a common pool of suppliers and ensures consistent service and delivery standards across its
stores. Positive Growth Outlook for Indian Food Service Sector
India’s food services sector revenue had a CAGR of 1.9%, advancing to Rs 8,366.6B in 2020 from Rs 7,601.4B
in 2015. Growth was mainly driven by the rise in number of transactions, which increased at a CAGR of 2.4%
during the period. The higher demand for dining out, increased exposure to various foods, and the growing rate
of urbanization have each been a catalyst in the growth of transactions, especially in 2020, when operations
were hit due to COVID-19. O’Neil Methodology
- The stock is currently forming a base in its weekly chart and is trading around 14% away from the crucial
- The stock has an EPS Rank of 30 which is a POOR score indicating inconsistency in earnings.
- The stock has a RS Rating of 17 which is POOR indicating the underperformance as compared to other
- It has Group Rank of 65 indicates it belongs to a poor industry group of Retail-Restaurants
Zomato is a technology based food delivery company which started its journey as a content and discovery platform for restaurants. Customers use their platform to search and discover restaurants, read and write customer
generated reviews and view and upload photos, order food delivery, book a table and make payments while
dining-out at restaurants. The company serves its customers right from the start of a dining out option to its
logical end of serving food at their very doorstep. Zomato has consistently gained market share over the last few years to become the leading player in its
Currently the company is operating in a duopoly market in the food delivery space in India. The company has been growing faster than industry in terms of GOV growth. Low Food services penetration provides huge headroom for growth:
India’s total addressable food service market is estimated at $32-35bn in 2020. Out of this only 8-9% is online
food delivery market as compared to ~45%-50% penetration in China & US. This under penetration leaves
huge runway of growth for the online food delivery segment in India. Zomato is focused on winning market
share from home cooked food. We believe increased hygiene measure adopted by restaurants post COVID will
help in transition of consumers from Home cooked food to restaurant food at a faster pace. Increasing Internet & Smartphone Penetration in India will help drive number
The internet & smartphone penetration in India is far lower than China today. With availability of cheap data,
high speed 4G connections and affordable smart phones, digital penetration in India is slated for rapid growth
in the coming years. Internet penetration is expected to reach 68% (~970-1000 mn users) by CY25 while
smartphone penetration will reach 56% from current 49%/36%. Scale up in business to bed led by strong Networks
Zomato‘s richly curated content attracts large number of customers organically. These customers enhance the
restaurant listing content by adding their own reviews and photos on Zomato which starts a virtuous cycle of
new customer acquisition. More customers on the platform increases the number of food orders for the restaurants in turn leading to more restaurants becoming available for food delivery on the platform. It also increases
the choices available to customers leading to growth in customers and delivery in orders which reduces cost
and prices. Food Delivery, Dining-out and Hyperpure all to remain in focus:
Zomato through its platform allows transactions between the consumers and restaurants partners enlisted
with the platform and receives commission income on such transactions from the restaurant partners. Zomato
collects delivery fee from customer’s which it pays to the delivery partners without recording the same in its
Customers use our dining-out offerings to search and discover restaurants, read and write customer generated
reviews and view and upload photos, book a table and make payments while dining-out at restaurants
Zomato pro is an exclusive paid membership program which unlocks flat percentage discounts for its customers at select restaurant across both food delivery and dining out offerings. The customers become pro members
by paying Zomato a membership fee. As of December 31, 2020, the company has had 1.4 million Pro Members
and over 25,350 Pro Restaurant Partners in India.
Zomato like other online food-delivery platforms globally is transforming its single-purpose app into a multi-use
“super apps”. Zomato is looking at foray into the online grocery segment and has recently acquired a ~9% stake
in Grofers for ~Rs 7.5bn.
Hyperpure is a farm-to-fork supplies offering platform for restaurants in India. Zomato sources fresh, hygienic,
quality ingredients and supplies it directly from farmers, mills, producers and processors to restaurant partners,
helping them make their supply chains more effective and predictable, and improving the overall quality of the
food being served. It is already supplying to 9225 restaurants.
Nuvoco Vistas is a Nirma group company that started operations in 1999. The group forayed into the cement
business in 2014 through a greenfield plant. It later acquired LafargeHolcim’s cement business in India in 2016
and that of NU Vista (formerly Emami Cement Limited) in 2020. It is the fifth largest cement company in India
and the largest in East India. It has 11 cement plants located in North and East India, with a consolidated capacity of 22.32 MMTPA.
It offers more than 50 products across businesses such as cement, ready-mix concrete (RMX), and modern
Revenue breakdown in FY21: Cement, 93%; RMX, 7%. Cement Production in FY21 Hit by Subdued Demand:
Cement production was at 294MT in FY21, registering a decline of 12% y/y from 334MT in FY20.
During FY21, domestic manufacturers registered low capacity utilization rates. Most units were operating at
sub-par capacities, along with staggered shifts, but a slight improvement was seen in H2. Due to the subdued
demand, several companies cut down or deferred capital expenditure. However, many companies have recently announced expansions and capex projects, indicating a reversal from conservative strategies and a rise in
The demand for cement is a good indicator of overall economic growth, particularly the housing and infrastructure sector. Demand is now increasing from affordable housing and construction work. Other government infrastructure projects such as roads, metros, airports, and irrigation are also some drivers that support the renewed
cement demand. Cement Sector to Gain Significant Opportunity from Government’s Budgetary Support:
The government has increased allocation by 26.2% toward infrastructure development, which presents significant opportunities for the country’s cement industry. Cement is an important downstream sector in the value
chain for tangible infrastructure projects. The National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP) has expanded to include
7,400 projects, as against 6,835 projects earlier.
In FY21, RMX production reduced 67% to 904 Km3 from 2,711 Km3. The RMX market was severely impacted
by the nationwide lockdowns as labor scarcity worsened the situation in H1 FY21. To mitigate the impact of
scarce labor, the company resumed operations selectively, based on plants’ profitability.
In FY21, cement production was down 11.7% to 11,138 KT and clinker production was down 10.9% to 6,497
- The stock listed on exchanges on August 23. Shares were listed at a sharp 17% discount to the issue price
of Rs 570.
- Its poor EPS Rank 58 indicates a poor fundamental profile.
- RS Rating of 25 indicates the stock’s relative underperformance to the general market.
Car Trade Tech
Car Trade Tech is a multi-channel auto platform with presence across several vehicle types and value-added
services. It operates several brands: CarWale, CarTrade, Shriram Automall, BikeWale, CarTradeExchange,
Adroit Auto, and AutoBiz. With the help of these channels, the company brings together buyers and sellers,
and enables simple, efficient sales of new and used automobiles. The stakeholders include customers, vehicle
dealerships, vehicle OEMs, and other businesses. The company aims to create an automotive digital ecosystem
that connects automobile customers, OEMs, dealers, banks, insurance companies, and other stakeholders. Car Trade Tech is Sole Profitable Automotive Digital Platform Among Peers
Per a RedSeer report, Car Trade Tech is the only profitable entity among automotive digital platforms. Its two
biggest brands, CarWale and BikeWale, ranked number one on relative online search popularity versus their
key competitors, between April 2020 and March 2021. Shriram Automall is one of the leading used-vehicle
auction platforms, based on the number of vehicles listed for auction for FY20.
In Q1 FY21, CarWale, CarTrade, and BikeWale collectively averaged 27.11M unique visitors per month, with
88.14% being organic visitors (directed via unpaid searches). Company Aims to Simplify Current Automotive Ecosystem:
Currently, India’s automotive ecosystem is highly fragmented and complex. The process of buying vehicles
forces buyers to navigate multiple channels and stages. This multiplicity of transactions could foster inefficiencies and negatively affect the seller’s margin. The company works on this opportunity to bring together and
match the appropriate vehicle buyers and sellers on a single platform. This requirement drives a constant need
for automotive portals. It has created a total addressable market for online automotive portals in India estimated
to be worth $14.3B in FY20. The Company’s Various Revenue Streams Include:
Company’s Key Operational Metrics:Improvements in Technology to Increase Sales on its Platforms
- Commission and fees from auction and remarketing of used vehicles for retail customers, banks and other
financial institutions, insurance companies, OEMs, leasing companies, and fleet and individual operators,
estimated to be Rs 14.2 crore in FY21
- Online advertising solutions on its various platforms for OEMs, dealers, banks, and other financial institutions
- Lead generation for OEMs, dealers, banks, and other financial institutions and insurance companies
- Technology-based services to OEMs, dealers, banks, and other financial institutions and insurance companies.
- Inspection and valuation services for banks and other financial institutions, insurance companies, and OEMs, estimated at Rs 1.7 crore for FY21
The company is constantly investing in technology to improve customer experience and business performance.
Software is updated regularly to improve the pricing tools, product reviews, market insights, and reports provided to consumers, dealers, insurance companies, banks and other financial institutions, and OEMs. The company’s investment in data analysis and technology would enable better monetization of its inventory of vehicles
through better pricing. Hence, customers are much more likely to purchase a vehicle on one of the company’s
websites, thus driving higher demand and sales volume.
Restated Profit and Loss Statement for FY21, FY20, and FY19: O’Neil Methodology
- The stock listed on exchanges on August 20. Shares were listed at 1% discount to the issue price.
- EPS Rank of 75 indicates a good fundamental profile.
- After making a high of Rs 1,618 on listing day, the stock closed in the lower half of the day’s range.
- It was 8% off highs. With the Nifty hitting new highs, the stock succumbed to selling pressure. Hence, it
has a lower RS Rating of 17.