Virgin America files for US IPO

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Armed Indonesian Air Force soldiers secure the Virgin Australia 737-800 plane on the tarmac at Denpasar airport in the resort island of Bali. (Sonny Tumbelaka, AFP)
Armed Indonesian Air Force soldiers secure the Virgin Australia 737-800 plane on the tarmac at Denpasar airport in the resort island of Bali. (Sonny Tumbelaka, AFP)

California - Virgin America the low-cost airline partly owned by Richard Branson, filed for an initial public offering of shares as it looks to expand in the recovering US airline market.

The company, which started flying in 2007, offers flights to 22 cities in the United States and Mexico, using 53 Airbus A320 aircraft.

Branson owns a 22% stake in Virgin America through the Virgin Group and a hedge fund.

Virgin America has been ranked first among US airlines for the last two years in the annual national Airline Quality Rating performance study published by researchers at Wichita State University and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Barclays and Deutsche Bank Securities are the lead underwriters for the offering, the company said in a regulatory filing on Monday.

The company did not disclose the number of shares to be sold or the listing exchange.

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