A WeBuyCars selling pod in a parking of a shopping centre at night

With its first trading session on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange performing above initial expectations, WeBuyCars is off to a great start as a publicly-trading company.

ALL THINGS MOTORING is happy to congratulate WeBuyCars on their successful listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), and we wish this South African success story even greater growth from this exciting new development.

JSE logo

Founded in 2001 as a family-owned car dealership, WeBuyCars has since grown to include 15 stores and 2 800 employees, and trades more than 14 000 vehicles every month. This makes WeBuyCars a major player in the South African vehicle retail arena, with a market share currently hovering between 10% and 12%.

Further expansion is planned with an increased focus on developing its e-commerce, finance- and insurance activities, aiming to double the company’s market share within the next four to five years. "It has been an amazing journey that culminated in a listing on the JSE. We are excited about the road ahead as the listing opens up many opportunities such as enhancing our brand, creating liquidity for shareholders, and attracting staff", said Faan van der Walt, CEO of WeBuyCars.

Stock price of WeBuyCars vs Transactional Capital - Thurs 11 April 2024Image: moneyweb.co.za

Following its unbundling from parent company Transaction Capital, WeBuyCars shares are now listed separately on the JSE under the WBC trading code. The newly publicly-trading company certainly had a great start to its first day on the JSE, with share prices exceeding its projected Initial Public Offering (IPO) value by a tidy margin.

417.2-million shares were offered at an IPO value of R 18.75 per share before trading started today (11 April 2024), giving a projected total market capitalization of R 7.8-billion. However, trading opened at R 20.00 per share and immediately started climbing from there. In the first half of its first trading day, WBC shares traded between R 20.20 and R 20.70 per share, meaning that its market capitalization was already running closer to the R 8.5-billion mark.

This is the first new listing on the JSE in 2024, and may mark the revival of activity in the capital market after many years of relative inactivity - the JSE only hosted three new IPOs over the past five years.