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Comestics firm Coty makes its public debut; shares fall below IPO price

Comestics firm Coty makes its public debut; shares fall below IPO price

New York-based cosmetic and body care company Coty Inc. (NYSE:COTY) is trading slightly lower on Thursday afternoon than its initial public offering price.

Shares began trading this morning a day after Coty set the IPO price of its common stock at $17.50 per share. The cast of underwriters has a 30-day window to offer 8.6 million additional shares at that price. 

Since the offering only consisted of shares held by existing investors, Coty's equity position will stay the same. Following the IPO, JAB, Berkshire Partners and Rhone Capital will control 97.7 per cent of the company's voting rights.

By going public, Coty enters a field that includes Estee Lauder (NYSE:EL), which has a $16.2 billion market cap, and Revlon (NYSE:REV), whose market cap is $1.1 billion. Coty's IPO price values the company at $6.7 billion. 

Coty makes fragrances, a product for which it's ranked second in the world, under the Adidas, Calvin Klein and Playboy brands. In its 2012 fiscal year, the company made $4.6 billion. Of that revenue, nearly half comes from its fragrances. During the same period, Coty lost $324.4 million, or 87 cents per share.

According to, there have been 76 IPOs so far this year. Of those, 54 rose from the initial price and 22 fell, creating a collective total return of 22.7 per cent. 

The other IPOs this week are from California tech firm Gigamon (NYSE:GIMO), which debuted Wednesday, and Kansas City-based Aratana Therapeutics (NASDAQ:PETX), which goes public Friday. The best-performing IPO year-to-date is from 3D printer manufacturer ExOne Company (NASDAQ:XONE), which began trading in February. 

Coty fell nearly a per cent to $17.33 as of 1:24 pm ET.

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