Although unofficial news, it is understood that the directors of PEXA have voted to pursue an IPO. An IPO would be the best outcome for the conveyancing industry in terms of transparency. As a public company, PEXA will have to comply with rigorous disclosure and reporting requirements visible to anyone who has an interest in keeping an eye on the company.
Conveyancing professionals and business owners will more easily be able to follow the financial progress of one of their most important business partners. So will PEXA’s imminent competitor, Sympli which is a subsidiary of InfoTrack and ASX, and will also have its own public reporting obligations as a part-owned subsidiary of a public company.
The road to a public float for PEXA has been a long one, with a couple of late detours. The detours have included testing the market for a trade sale as an alternative to a public float. The current owners of PEXA are Victorian, New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia Governments; the four major banks; Macquarie Capital; Little Group and Link Group.
It is understood that the last round of highest bidders to be rejected by PEXA’s board was a consortium that included Link Group and Commonwealth Bank of Australia, in conjunction with Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners.
A public float at the $1 billion mark was mentioned by PEXA CEO Marcus Price as far back as early 2015. At the time it seemed like an ‘out-of-this-world’ number, especially in relation to user adoption at the time. PEXA has still not reported a financial year profit but this will change with the boost from mandated use.
Although we will soon know the facts, media reporting refers to an IPO that could value the company at between $1.6 billion to $2 billion.