At long last, Twitter
is close to being traded on the stock market (New York Stock Exchange), and according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), owners plan to offer up 70 million shares for $17 to $20 each for its initial public offering (IPO). The company hopes to raise $1.4 billion, which is well short of Facebook's
$16 billion IPO in 2012, but still the largest technology IPO since then.
Outside of immediate value, there are other differences between Twitter and Facebook going public. According to Bloomberg
, the biggest shareholders, including co-founder Evan Williams who owns a greater than 10 percent stake worth around $1 billion, plan to keep their shares after the IPO. It's a big risk for a company that isn't yet profitable, but it shows confidence in Twitter's ability to monetize its more than 200 million users.
Robert Peck, and analyst with SunTrust Robinson Humphrey in New York, told Bloomberg
that retaining stock "shows conviction about the long-term prospects of the company."
That could change between now and November 6, 2013, which is when Twitter's IPO is scheduled. Investors who currently own share in the company can register to sell off all or part of their stake before that date, though once the company goes public, executive officers, directors, and current shareholders will have to retain their stock for 180 days before they're allowed to sell.