Book Building Ipo Process

Book building ipo process

Book building ipo process

Read this article to learn about the meaning of book building, its process and comparison with fixed price method and reserve book building.

Meaning of Book Building:

Every business organisation needs funds for its business activities. It can raise funds either externally or through internal sources. When the companies want to go for the external sources, they use various means for the same. Two of the most popular means to raise money are Initial Public Offer (IPO) and Follow on Public Offer (FPO).

Book building ipo process

During the IPO or FPO, the company offers its shares to the public either at fixed price or offers a price range, so that the investors can decide on the right price. The method of offering shares by providing a price range is called book building method. This method provides an opportunity to the market to discover price for the securities which are on offer.

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Book Building may be defined as a process used by companies raising capital through Public Offerings-both Initial Public Offers (IPOs) and Follow-on Public Offers (FPOs) to aid price and demand discovery.

It is a mechanism where, during the period for which the book for the offer is open, the bids are collected from investors at various prices, which are within the price band specified by the issuer. The process is directed towards both the institutional investors as well as the retail investors. The issue price is determined after the bid closure based on the demand generated in the process.

Book Building vs. Fixed Price Method:

The main difference between the book building method and the fixed price method is that in the former, the issue price to not decided initially.

The investors have to bid for the shares within the price range given. The issue price is fixed on the basis of demand and supply of the shares.

On the other hand, in the fixed price method, the price is decided right at the start. Investors cannot choose the price. They have to buy the shares at the price decided by the company. In the book building method, the demand is known every day during the offer period, but in fixed price method, the demand is known only after the issue closes.

Book Building in India:

The introduction of book-building in India was done in 1995 following the recommendations of an expert committee appointed by SEBI under Y.H.

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Malegam. The committee recommended and SEBI accepted in November 1995 that the book-building route should be open to issuer companies, subject to certain terms and conditions. In January 2000, SEBI came out with a compendium of guidelines, circulars and instructions to merchant bankers relating to issue of capital, including those on the book-building mechanism.

Book Building Process:

The principal intermediaries involved in a book building process are the companies, Book Running Lead Manager (BRLM) and syndicate members are the intermediaries registered with SEBI and eligible to act as underwriters.

Syndicate members are appointed by the BRLM.

Book building ipo process

The book building process is undertaken basically to determine investor appetite for a share at a particular price. It is undertaken before making a public offer and it helps determine the issue price and the number of shares to be issued.

The following are the important points in book building process:


The Issuer who is planning an offer nominates lead merchant banker(s) as ‘book runners’.

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2. The Issuer specifies the number of securities to be issued and the price band for the bids.


The Issuer also appoints syndicate members with whom orders are to be placed by the investors.

Book building

4. The syndicate members put the orders into an ‘electronic book’. This process is called ‘bidding’ and is similar to open auction.


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The book normally remains open for a period of 5 days.

6. Bids have to be entered within the specified price band.

7. Bids can be revised by the bidders before the book closes.

8. On the close of the book building period, the book runners evaluate the bids on the basis of the demand at various price levels.

9. The book runners and the Issuer decide the final price at which the securities shall be issued.


Generally, the number of shares is fixed; the issue size gets frozen based on the final price per share.

11. Allocation of securities is made to the successful bidders. The rest bidders get refund orders.

How is the Price Fixed?

All the applications received till the last dates are analyzed and a final offer price, known as the cut­off price is arrived at. The final price is the equilibrium price or the highest price at which all the shares on offer can be sold smoothly.

If the price quoted by an investor is less than the final price, he will not get allotment.

If price quoted by an investor is higher than the final price, the amount in excess of the final price is refunded if he gets allotment.

If the allotment is not made, full money is refunded within 15 days after the final allotment is made. If the investor does not get money or allotment in a month’s time, he can demand interest at 15 per cent per annum on the money due.


In this method, the company doesn’t fix up a particular price for the shares, but instead gives a price range, e.g., Rs.

80 to 100. When bidding for the shares, investors have to decide at which price they would like to bid for the shares, e.g., Rs. 80, Rs.

IPO Book Building Process Explained

90 or Rs. 100. They can bid for the shares at any price within this range. Based on the demand and supply of the shares, the final price is fixed.

The lowest price (Rs. 80) is known as the floor price and the highest price (Rs. 100) is known as cap price. The price at which the shares are allotted is known as cut off price.

Book Building: Meaning, Process and Comparison

The entire process begins with the selection of the lead manager, an investment banker whose job is to bring the issue to the public.

Both the lead manager and the issuing company fix the price range and the issue size. Next, syndicate members are hired to obtain bids from the investors.

Book building ipo process

Normally, the issue is kept open for 5 days. Once the offer period is over, the lead manager and issuing company fix the price at which the shares are sold to the investors.

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If the issue price is less than the cap price, the investors who bid at the cap price will get a refund and those who bid at the floor price will end up paying the additional money. For example, if the cut off in the above example is fixed at Rs. 90, those who bid at Rs. 80, will have to pay Rs.

10 per share and those who bid at Rs. 100, will end up getting the refund of Rs. 10 per share.

Book building ipo process

Once each investor pays the actual issue price, the share are allotted.

Book Building vs. Reserve Book Building:

While book building is used to raise capital for the company’s business operations, reverse book building is used for buyback of shares from the market. Reverse book building is also a price discovery method, in which the bids are taken from the current investors and the final price is decided on the last day of the offer.

Normally the price fixed in reverse book building exceeds the market price.