PhD Defence Wilco Legierse

In his dissertation 'The Timing and Pricing of Initial Public Offerings, Evidence from the Low Countries', Wilco Legierse investigated which factors determine the influx of newcomers. In addition, he investigated the causes of a persistent phenomenon with respect to the pricing of stock IPOs: underpricing. Wilco defended his dissertation on Friday, 25 February 2022 at 10:30. His supervisors were Prof. Abe de Jong (University of Groningen) and Prof. Peter Roosenboom (RSM). Other members of the Doctoral Committee were Prof. Jutta Bolt (University of Groningen), Prof. Mathijs van Dijk(RSM),  Prof. Peter Koudijs (ESE), Prof. Marie Dutordoir (University of Manchester) and Prof. Dirk Schoenmaker (RSM).

About Wilco Legierse

Wilco Legierse was born in Dirksland, the Netherlands, on June 8, 1964. He is married to Annelies and they live in Zoetermeer, the Netherlands. He earned his bachelor's degree in electrical engineering in 1987 and in 2010 he finished his master’s degree in Business Administration at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam. The subject of his master thesis is the fluctuation in the number of Dutch stock IPOs between 1876 and 2010. Wilcoentered the PhD-program at the Rotterdam School of Management as an external PhD-candidate under the supervision of Prof. Abe de Jong and Prof. Peter Roosenboom in 2015 along his full-time position as Senior Project Manager for Rail Solutions and Services at Siemens Mobility. His academic work is presented at the annual conference of the Economic History Society at the University of York in April 2013 and at the Eurhistock Conference at the University of Antwerp in May 2013. Wilco’s research areas of interest are corporate finance and business history. The article version of Chapter 2 “What causes hot markets for equity IPOs? An analysis of initial public offerings in the Netherlands, 1876 – 2015” is based on his master thesis and is published in European Review of Economic History in 2021.

Thesis Abstract

The number of firms that list their shares on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange reached a record high in the early 1930s and has since fallen. The influx of new listings through Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) is insufficient to compensate for delistings due to takeovers, bankruptcies, mergers and privatizations. Such a decline is also observed in other countries, so that the trend in the Netherlands cannot simply be attributed to a changing role of its stock exchange in the international capital markets. In order to understand the decline in the number of listings, Wilco Legierse investigates in his dissertation which factors determine the influx of newcomers. In addition, he investigates the causes of a persistent phenomenon with respect to the pricing of stock IPOs: underpricing.

Wilco provides evidence that a firm’s capital need, the role of the Amsterdam Stock Exchange in the Dutch capital market and investors’ sentiment were strong drivers for periods with many IPOs between 1876 and 2015 in the Netherlands. An analysis with Belgian data shows that stock IPOs between 1839 and 1935 were neither complementary nor substitute to bond IPOs and that an abrupt drastic relaxation of stock market regulations in 1873 did not immediately increase the number of both types of issues. With regard to pricing, Wilco finds that Dutch stock IPOs were on average underpriced in the interwar period and that the level of underpricing fluctuated with the sentiment on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange, independent of the method used for offering shares to investors prior to the listing.

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Photos: Michelle Muus / Michelle Muus Fotografie