Twitter files for billion dollar IPO

2013-10-04 08:48

New York – Twitter revealed plans to raise $1 billion (R10 billion) in an initial public offering, setting the stage for the most eagerly awaited tech offering since Facebook’s over-hyped public launch last May.

In financial documents filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, the popular social networking site revealed it had tripled its income in 2012 to $316.9 million, but still lost $79.4 million (R795 million).

Twitter was formed just seven years ago with a simple format which limits users to messages of just 140 characters. The site has some 215 million monthly active users and a volume of around 500 million messages each day.

It lost even more money – $69 million – in the first six months of 2013. But its ad revenues grew even more, reaching $254 million compared to $122 million in the year-earlier period.

Twitter said in September it had filed IPO documents with the SEC. But under a new law for companies with less than $1 billion of revenue, it was allowed to keep details of the offer under wraps until now.

The timing of the filing indicates the shares could go on sale by November. Twitter has been valued on secondary markets as high as $10 billion, but the financial documents filed yesterday did not specify an estimated company value, the number of shares to be sold or the potential price per share.

The company said it would list its stocks under the TWTR ticker symbol, but did not say whether it would trade on the New York Stock Exchange of the Nasdaq stock market.

Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are leading the IPO.

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