Some might call it investing Nirvana. Combine a company with a steady – inevitable, even – growth in its customer base with a trend towards higher spending. Sell it as a rare route into the growing wealth of the ethnic Chinese middle class. The enterprise in question is even called Nirvana – and it sells funeral services.

Nirvana Asia, a southeast Asian undertaker, opened the books on its $300m initial public offering in Hong Kong on Tuesday. Late in the first day of a week-long roadshow, bankers reported bids had already covered the shares on offer.

The deal would create in Hong Kong a mini-sector of what bankers like to call “deathcare services” following the listing last year of Fu Shou Yuan, a China-focused group in the same business, which enjoyed a 45 per cent opening day bounce. Read more

All eyes are on China’s Alibaba, the e-commerce behemoth, and its planned US listing – not least from neighbouring India.

Senior management at Snapdeal, the online marketplace backed by eBay, are watching the initial public offering (IPO) closely as they mull a similar listing themselves. Co-founder, Kunal Bahl, told beyondbrics that the company could launch an IPO in 18 to 24 months’ time. Read more

Imagine you are bidding for an item on eBay, and the lowest bid wins while the highest bid loses. Impossible? That is what is happening in the world of Chinese initial public offerings. Read more

China’s IPO season has officially reopened. Five companies said on Tuesday they had received approval from the China Securities Regulatory Commission to issue new shares, bringing China’s longest ever IPO drought to an end. Read more

The end of a year-long freeze on stock market listings in China might sound look good news for investors but for several reasons Chinese stocks fell on Monday, the first day of trading since the weekend announcement, with the ChiNext Composite index – representing China’s answer to the Nasdaq exchange – plunging 8.26 per cent, its biggest single day decline in its four-year history. Read more

It was the biggest initial public offering in Romania’s history, and the latest of several big IPOs in eastern Europe. But will Friday’s part-privatisation of natural-gas utility Romgaz reinvigorate Romania’s stalled liberalisation programme? Read more

Carrying cargo may appear to be dull but worthy work, but there is also a lot of money in it, as investors in PKP Cargo, the Polish rail cargo carrier, found out during the company’s Tuesday IPO.

The share price closed up 19.4 per cent at 81.16 zlotys ($26.70), up from its initial offering price of 68 zlotys.

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Russia: good footwear required

A Siberian retailer that began selling mid-priced shoes in Russian regions a decade ago is growing so fast that there is local talk of the company becoming “the Magnit of footwear”. Obuv Rossii now plans to go public offering investors a foot in the door to one of Russia’s most buoyant consumer sectors. Read more

Riiight. As if Beijing was ever really going to let Alibaba – its homegrown answer to Amazon and eBay and a major source of national pride – list anywhere but Hong Kong.

Well, guess what? One month after Alibaba said it had abandoned plans for a $60bn-plus initial public offering in Hong Kong to pursue a US listing, the ecommerce giant appears to be having second thoughts. Read more

Laying the groundwork for the largest initial public offering this year on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, PKP, the Polish state railways announced on Wednesday that it was setting a 68 zlotys ($22.30) share price for PKP Cargo, its freight subsidiary.

PKP is selling just under half of the shares in PKP Cargo in a transaction valued at 1.4bn zlotys. The money will go towards reducing PKP’s 4bn zlotys in debt, of which 1bn zlotys is coming due. Read more

Russian IPOs have slowed of late. In contrast to 2007, when 32 Russian businesses listed on stock exchanges around the world, just five companies have floated in 2013.

Tinkoff Credit Systems, a credit card company, is the latest. It is the first to choose the London Stock Exchange this year as its place of trading. (Alrosa, the state diamond miner, intends to float but on the Moscow Exchange.) Read more

The great expectations that Mexico’s largest dairy company, Grupo Lala, generated when it said it would go public three weeks ago, were not exaggerated.

On its debut on the Mexican stock exchange on Wednesday, the company’s shares rose 7.6 per cent to close at 29.59 pesos, reflecting the great appetite the company had generated among investors because of its track record and growth prospects. Read more

The Russians are coming: Alrosa, the state diamond miner, and Tinkoff Credit Systems both announced plans to go public this week and there is a long line of other Russian companies waiting to list. So as investors weigh up the all too familiar Russian risks, it’s worth tallying up how recent Russian IPOs have panned out. Read more

The door is not exactly being kicked wide open. But after two years of accounting scandals and critical reports from short-sellers, Chinese companies are slowly making their way back to Wall Street again – and it’s not just Alibaba eyeing up New York.

On Monday, Qunar, a popular travel website in China, filed paperwork with the US Securities and Exchange Commission to raise $125m in an initial public offering.

The move comes just three days after 58.com, China’s answer to Craigslist, filed to list on the New York Stock Exchange with an offer to sell $150m of ordinary shares in the form of American Depository Shares (ADSs). A day earlier, Montage Technology Group, a Shanghai-based computer chip maker, raised $71m in its public debut. Read more

By Nicholas Watson of bne

Stock Spirits Group is preparing an IPO on the London Stock Exchange which it hopes will raise about £50m to help finance its goal of becoming central and eastern Europe’s leading spirits producer. Read more

The Warsaw Stock Exchange has had a lacklustre year in terms of new issues. But it could end 2013 with a bang with the planned IPO of PKP Cargo SA, the country’s largest rail cargo operator and the second largest rail freight carrier in the EU. Read more

Grupo Lala, Mexico largest milk producer, plans to sell shares in Mexico and abroad in the first initial public offering of a dairy company in the country.

The company didn’t disclose the size of its offering, but Bloomberg, citing two unnamed sources with direct knowledge of the transaction, said Grupo Lala would seek to raise at least US$700m Read more

By Eric Platt of FastFT

Another Latin American airline is looking to try its luck on Wall Street.

Avianca Holdings, Colombia’s flag carrier, filed paperwork with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday to float shares in New York. Read more

It hasn’t taken long for the recovery in Middle Eastern markets to persuade once-shy companies that now could be the time to list.

The announcement this week that the Bank of London and The Middle East would list on NasdaqDubai, which has just two actively traded stocks, signalled the first new listing in Dubai in nearly five years. Read more

One of China’s top investment banks has taken a step towards going public with China International Capital Corporation preparing the early ground work for an initial public offering to raise capital.

Levin Zhu, chief executive of the brokerage, has commissioned an internal study to look into the possibility of listing, said people familiar with the matter.

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