Visa Plans $17 Billion Public Offer
Rob Peters | February 25, 2008 at 09:52 pmby
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Undaunted by recent turbulence in the financial markets, Visa Inc., the nation’s biggest credit card network, said Monday that it would forge ahead with what would be the largest initial public stock offering in United States history.
Visa plans to sell as much as $17.1 billion of stock in late March, following in the footsteps of its smaller rival, MasterCard, which went public in May 2006.
Visa plans to sell 406 million Class A shares for $37 to $42 a share, with just over half going to the public and the rest to Visa’s member banks.
Since going public nearly two years ago, MasterCard shares have soared 408 percent, closing at $198.45 on Monday. It now has a market value of $26 billion.
Visa transactions accounted for roughly 66 percent of all credit and debit card purchases in the United States in 2006, compared with about 26 percent for MasterCard, according to The Nilson Report data.