Amundi is setting up a new desk focused on equity capital markets (ECM) transactions in a bid to scale up its presence in the initial public offering (IPO) segment, reported Bloomberg.

The firm’s ECM desk is expected to help Amundi participate in the stock offering at an initial stage as a cornerstone or anchor investor.

This team will be responsible for coordinating research as well as due diligence efforts linked to share sales and IPOs.

Amundi Europe head of research Luc Mouzon told the news agency: “There is a need to get a better profile of companies early on.

“As a cornerstone, we can create a long-standing relationship with management,” while boosting confidence in an IPO, he said. Mouzon will lead the ECM desk.”

The move comes as record IPO issuance in the past year brought to light the need for enhanced efficiency on the part of investors in reviewing pitches.

In addition, the investors are also troubled with less time for due diligence due to shorter bookbuilding periods resulting from pandemic lockdowns.

According to the report, a major proportion of last year’s listings are currently trading below their offering prices as investors become more selective on valuations.

Mouzon was quoted as saying: “The IPO scorecard hasn’t been great in Europe over the last year.

“Getting in at an early stage means we can influence the process and get to a more balanced view between seller and buyer on pricing.”

Earlier this week, Bloomberg reported that UBS is slashing jobs related to equity capital markets due to a decline in revenues as deal-making lost pace across the industry.