“Is the Cellebrum IPO still on?” was the question two senior execs at the Telecom CEO Conclave asked me yesterday.

My sense was that given the market conditions and the worldwide panic across financial markets, they would defer it until the market recovers. It would be brave, perhaps foolhardy, for a company to try to raise money from the public until this storm passes by.

As a case in point, take a look at OnMobile Global, which is probably the market leader in the Mobile Data Services or VAS space. It ended last week at Rs. 484.90, just Rs. 44.90 above its issue price, and much much below its 7 month high of 744.70; it listed on Feb 19th 2008. Would Cellebrum take a risk is such volatile markets?

Confounding the issue, according to the Economic Times, is that SEBI has denied Cellebrum a listing because the bankrupt Lehman Brothers cannot offload 2,541,454 shares (7.58% stake) in the company. That assessment appears to be incorrect. We couldn’t locate the relevant notice on SEBI’s website, but there was a mention of the processing status:

“File closed vide letter dated 25-July-2008 to BRLM, on account of non-compliance of SEBI DIP Guidelines with regard to eligibility norms and disclosure of Financial information

Lehman Brothers Cellebrum The file was closed before Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy. ET adds that the BK Modi group may buy back Lehman Brothers stake in Cellebrum, when the shares are made available from the bankruptcy court. So will Cellebrum look at raising capital from other sources? Do take a look at their financials here, and download the DRHP here.

Cellebrum Files DRHP; Nine Month Operating Income of Rs. 734.56 Million; Pre-IPO; Lehman Stake Sale