Allotment « Back to Glossary Index

An allotment is the systematic distribution of business resources, often pertaining to the distribution of shares during initial public offerings (IPOs) to underwriting firms or to new and existing shareholders. Companies utilize allotments for various purposes including operational growth, debt management, and employee incentivization. The process can be facilitated through different strategies including overallotment options to stabilize share prices post-IPO, guided by market demands and underwriters’ estimations.

What is an Allotment?

  • The allotment is a well-organized distribution of resources or assigned resources within a business to other existing entities over time.
  •  Allotment refers to the distribution of equity (shares) to any other underwriting firm which has participated in initial public offerings.
  • Several allotments are performed at the time of issuing new shares in the market, either to the new one or any previous existing shareholders in the market.
  • Usually, at the time of more demand in the market than existing supply, various companies generally use to allot shares and other resources.

Key Points on Allotment

  • It refers to a systematic distribution of operational business resources among various entities over time.
  • Allotment refers to the distribution of equity (shares) to any other underwriting firm which has participated in initial public offerings.
  • Allotment is usually performed and executed by the companies when there is an excess demand in the market.
  • Companies can easily allot stock splits, employee stock options and rights offerings when they require.
  • In order to acquire more funds for having good business operations, companies usually prefer to go and issue new shares for allotment purposes.

Understanding Allotments

  • In the business field, allotment refers to the systematic and well-managed distribution of business resources among different entities over time. In finance, allotment is associated with the allocation of shares under a public share offering.
  • In case any privately owned company decides to acquire funds for any cause, either to expand their business operations or increase their purchase volume, etc., they prefer to allocate their shares by going in public. Mainly, two or more financial establishments, execute share allotment using underwritten public offerings. Out of which, both underwriters get an equal amount of specified shares to sell. 
  • Sometimes, the allotment process under initial public offerings gets more complicated for an individual investor because the stock market efficiently matches the prices and volume. Still, demand is estimated before an initial public offering. Investors need to be confirmed and specific about the price and volume of shares they prefer to purchase.
  • If there is an excess demand in the market, then the allotment of shares received by an investor is lower than those requested share amounts. Meanwhile, if the market demand gets low, the investor will get their requested number of shares allotment from IPO at a lower amount.

Different forms of Allotments

  • Allotment of shares can be executed not only by the initial public offerings. It can be performed in case any firm or company owner wants to assign new shares to pre-determine its shareholders. Pre-determined shareholders have already applied for new shares or earned some shares on existing shares accordingly.
  • Mostly, companies prefer to opt for the allotment of shares for their employees using the employee stock options (ESOs). Companies use this process to attract more new employees and want to keep their existing ones in addition to salaries and wages accordingly. This process encourages employees to perform much better.
  • Rights issues or offerings allocate such shares to investors interested in buying more shares. It offers investors rights and obligates them to buy more shares from the same company. Such allotments help the companies acquire funds by giving those investors ownership in a newly created firm.

The motive behind raising shares

  • The primary reason behind issuing the new shares for allotment purposes is to acquire money for the financial growth of the business operations. Generally, initial public offerings are required to raise such funds accordingly.
  • Usually, the company issues the allotment of new shares to pay out the previous debts, which may be obtained for the short or long term. Allotment of shares can be widely performed to change the status of a firm from debt to asset or debt to equity.
  • Sometimes, companies prefer to issue allotments of new shares in the market without having any debt or if they have small debts. Companies, in order to keep the sustainable growth organic and need no hindrance in growth, are supposed to issue new shares to acquire more and more funds.
  • Sometimes, owners of companies prefer to go through the allotment of shares in order to take over some other existing business under them. New shares are allotted to those existing shareholders in case of acquiring some other businesses.  
  • In order to give some monetary benefits, companies mostly issue new shares allotment among their existing shareholders and stakeholders.

Overallotment Options

  • It provides an option for underwriters with additional shares to easily sell their shares using an IPO or through any offerings. Such a process is known as overallotment or green shoe option.
  • Within the overallotment process, underwriters are allowed more than 15% of shares to issue than those companies originally want to issue shares. The underwriters must avail themselves of such an option before the allotment day; moreover, interested companies are allowed another 30 days to use the overallotment of shares. Companies prefer to opt for such options in times when there is high demand in the market. Either the shares are trading higher than their offering price. 
  • Overallotments are supposed to allow such companies to fix and stabilize their pricing of shares in the stock market if those prices are getting lower than their offering price.
  • In case the pricing of a share hikes to its threshold value, then underwriters are allowed to buy more additional shares at the same offering value. Mostly, underwriters use this technique to secure themselves from loss.
  • If the pricing of shares falls beyond the offering price, underwriters are allowed to decrease share supply after purchasing a few shares, which results in a hike in the pricing of shares value.

IPO green shoe

  • The green shoe is a type of overallotment option that happens during initial public offerings.
  • It allows underwriters to conduct a sale of some additional shares beyond the original consent of the company selling the shares.
  • It occurs when investors are demanding excess beyond the presumption.
  • It allows underwriters to handle any market variations and stabilize the pricing of shares within the same market.
  • In case there is a hike in demand, then underwriters are more likely allowed to sell out 15% more shares within a period of 30 days after IPO offerings,  beyond the original intention of the company to sell shares,

How Does an IPO Determine the Allotment of Shares?

  • Before an IPO offering, underwriters should determine the expected value of the share to be sold in an initial public offering on estimated demand.
  • As this selling of shares gets determined, underwriters are allowed to sell a certain amount of shares in public through initial public offerings.
  • The pricing of shares is calculated on the basis of demand generated from the market. If the demand is higher in nature, then the company can make profits/high prices from such public offerings. If the demand is less in the market, it attracts a low IPO price per share.

 Share Oversubscription vs. Under subscription

  • Usually, share oversubscription seems possible when there is more demand for shares than anticipated volume. In such a situation, the pricing of shares can easily go high, and investors are not getting more benefits under this; they may either get a low amount of shares after investing a high amount in the market.
  • An undersubscription might be possible when there exists a low demand for shares in the market beyond the company’s expectations. Such a situation causes the pricing of stocks to fall. Then, an investor is capable of acquiring more shares beyond his/her expectation at a very low price from the same stock market.
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