Google IPO Bidding Opens
Google’s IPO bidding is officially open. Google and its underwriters expect to open the auction for the shares of Google’s Class A common stock at 9:00 a.m. EST (press time) on Friday, August 13, 2004. Google bidders must have obtained a bidder ID from ipo.google.com if you intend to submit a bid in the auction for Google’s Class A common stock.
Google expects to announce the IPO price for Google’s Class A common stock during the week of August 16, 2004.
The company also said it expects to announce next week the initial public offering price–which it estimates will be between $108 and $135 per share–of the available 25.7 million shares. That could value the company at more than $36 billion.
The auction lands during a rough patch for IPOs, with the list of withdrawn or delayed deals growing longer by the day. As of Wednesday, 33 IPOs had been postponed or withdrawn, according to Thomson Financial, with more than half the deals this quarter pricing below the low end of their estimated range.
Recently, Google has not been making the kind of news that a “ready to IPO” company should be making. On the heels of reported Google IPO problems including new Federal investigation into missing shares, auction set up, Google’s gifting of a valued $149 million in shares to Yahoo over a trademark dispute, and all around questions about the hype of Google’s initial public offering.
Yahoo and Google Settle on Lawsuit
Yahoo Inc. and Google Inc. this week announced that the companies have resolved two disputes that have been pending between the companies. Under the terms of the settlement agreement, Google will take a license to U.S. Patent No. 6,269,361 and several related patents, held by Yahoo!’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Overture, and Yahoo! dismissed its patent lawsuit against Google. The two parties have also resolved a dispute regarding shares issuable to Yahoo! pursuant to a warrant to purchase Google shares in connection with a 2000 services agreement.
In connection with the settlement of the warrant dispute, the patent lawsuit, and in payment for the license, Google issued shares of its Class A common stock to Yahoo.
Hyping the IPO in Playboy
On the day of the IPO comes more Google controversy – Google’s founders will appear in an upcoming issue of Playboy magazine, the Mercury News reports. Talk about hitting the bigtime (and your target market of would be investors) on the eve of Google’s IPO, Page and Brin are going to join the ranks of Jack Nicholson and Malcolm X as being interviewed by Playboy.
Rueters reports that the Playboy interview may have broken US Securities laws over pre-IPO “quiet periods”:
The article in the September 2004 issue of Playboy entitled “Playboy Interview: Google Guys” could have potentially violated the so-called “quiet period” that limits communication by company executives ahead of their IPO.
According to the company filing, the article was derived from an interview with Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.
Google said it does not believe its involvement in the article constitutes a securities violation, but it could be required to buy back the shares sold to investors in the IPO at the original purchase price for a period of one year following the violation.