Nielsen, Demand Media IPOs Priced Above Target Range

Both companies with a media and entertainment tie-in will see their stocks start trading Wednesday.

NEW YORK -- The IPOs of media measurement giant Nielsen and online media firm Demand Media were priced above their expected price ranges late Tuesday in a sign of investor demand for the two market entrants and IPOs in general.

In a rare occurrence for investors with an interest in media and entertainment, both stocks will make their market debut Wednesday. 

Shares of Nielsen, the biggest private equity-backed firm to go public in several years, priced at $23 after the market close Tuesday, raising at least $1.6 billion, according to Renaissance Capital, an investment management firm that specializes in IPOs.

Nielsen's stock market listing is the biggest since car giant General Motors went public again in a $23.1 billion deal late last year.

The company had previously said it was eyeing a $20-$22 price range, but IPO prices can change based on investor interest and stock market trends. Nielsen's stock will begin trading Wednesday morning on the New York Stock Exchange under ticker symbol NLSN.

Meanwhile, Demand Media, whose CEO is Richard Rosenblatt, a serial entrepreneur who sold MySpace to News Corp., saw its IPO price at $17 -- also above the predicted $14-$16 range, according to IPOBoutique.com. According to the IPO site, the company also decided to sell more shares than initially planned in the going-public deal – 8.9 million instead of the previously eyed 7.5 million. The company, which is known for producing cheap evergreen content for its own range of sites and other media companies' sites, will debut on the NYSE under ticker symbol DMD after raising about $151 million.

Last year, entertainment industry insiders mainly had the IPO of movie 3D technology firm RealD to follow. It opened in July with a 22 percent first-day gain.

 

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