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Shares of Centuri Holdings, a unit of Southwest Gas Holdings, jumped 13 per cent in their market debut on Thursday, in another sign of a revival in investor demand for new stocks.

Centuri, which builds and maintains energy networks that power millions of homes and businesses across the United States and Canada, sold 12.4 million shares priced at $21 apiece to raise roughly $260.4-million in its initial public offering.

The stock opened for trading at $23.75 apiece, valuing the company at about $2.06-billion. Centuri priced its IPO at the top end of its marketed range of $18-$21.

Funds affiliated with billionaire and activist investor Carl Icahn also purchased about 2.6 million shares of Centuri in a separate private placement for proceeds of about $54.4-million.

After a two-year dry spell, IPOs in the United States are in the early innings of a rebound in 2024 on firming bets of a soft landing for the economy and a broad rally in the capital markets.

Last year, parent Southwest Gas said it plans to separate Centuri through an IPO and use the proceeds to cut its debt and reduce its ownership after the launch.

UBS Investment Bank, BofA Securities and J.P. Morgan are the lead underwriters of the offering.

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