Goat milk formula manufacturer Nuchev has listed on the ASX as a publicly traded company.
Shares were issued at $2.60, which jumped to $3.40 but ultimately closed at $3.20, 23 per cent above the issue price. The company raised $48.7 million at $2.60 a share in a book-build in late November.
Founder and CEO Ben Dingle said the listing was a natural progression for the company, which launched in 2013. Dingle previously co-founded Synlait Milk, The a2 Milk Company’s processing partner. (Last month a2 Milk and Synlait announced a two-year extension to its manufacturing and supply agreement, taking it to 31 July 2025. In October Synlait announced it would be aquiring New Zealand-based Dairyworks for NZ$112 million (Food & Drink Business 26/11/2019).)
When the company started in 2013, the domestic goat milk infant formula (GIF) market was worth $3 million. The category is now valued at more than $105 million annually.
Dingle said the company’s growth strategy and distribution partnerships were key to its success. The listing with “prove critical for Nuchev’s future growth”, he said. Dingle is the majority shareholder (46.2 per cent) with 20.78 million shares worth around $66 million.
In the prospectus, chair Justin Breheny said the global GIF market was expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.6 per cent, from $6.3 billion in 2018 to $13.6 billion in 2023.
Nuchev is specifically targeting the Chinese GIF market, which is forecast to grow at a CAGR of 18.8 per cent, reaching $9.2 billion and almost 13 per cent of the total Chinese infant formula market by 2023, Breheny said.
Dingle said the company has a proven capability in Chinese market expansion, growing its CAGR by 200 per cent since 2017. It is forecast to generate $18 million by the end of the financial year, he said.
Nuchev started in the pharmacy channel and this year expanded into the retail market with a multi-million-dollar distribution deal with Coles.
A Stage 4 junior goat milk drink for children aged three to seven and a full cream goat milk powder were added to Nuchev’s range this year.
Growing consumer demand has seen Nuchev this year release Australia’s first Stage 4 junior goat milk drink for children aged three to seven years, as well as add a full cream goat milk powder to its range. The packaging has also been updated to coincide with the listing.