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Hangover drink maker seeks W596.9b IPO as Korean PEs eye exit

A promotional image of health functional drinks under the
A promotional image of health functional drinks under the "Condition" brand owned by HK Inno.N. (HK Inno.N)
HK inno.N, South Korean pharmaceutical firm and maker of popular hangover drink Condition, is poised to raise 596.9 billion won ($516.6 million) in a forthcoming two-day initial public offering until Friday, a disclosure showed Wednesday.

The IPO of the company, formerly known as CJ HealthCare, will give its private investors a chance to immediately cash in 255.8 billion won before its August listing on the Korea Exchange‘s development bourse Kosdaq.

Beneficiaries will be three private equity firms, H&Q Korea, Mirae Asset Private Equity and STIC Investments. They were financial backers of Kolmar Korea’s acquisition of CJ HealthCare in 2018 from CJ CheilJedang.

The news comes as HK Inno.N‘s share price was confirmed at the upper end of the target price band -- at 59,000 won apiece -- in the three-day book building process that wrapped up Monday. The book building process drew bids from over 1,600 institutional investors, according to the company.

HK Inno.N aims to float a total of 10.1 million common shares as it goes public at a 1.7 trillion-won valuation, with 4.3 million shares coming from existing financial investors.

With the partial divestment, the private equity investors are expected to return over 84 percent from its investment in 2018. For the remaining 6.6 million shares, or a combined 22.84 percent stake in HK Inno.N, investors will be subject to three- to six-month lockup period after the listing.

HK Inno.N has been dedicated to medicines for diseases including gastroesophageal reflux disease and health functional foods including Condition. The company logged 87 billion won in operating profit for 2020, up 20 percent on-year.

By Son Ji-hyoung (