Alibaba ups IPO share price to $66-$68 range

BY Matt Krantz | FROM USA TODAY | 2014-09-16 09:47

  5:32 p.m. EDT September 15, 2014

  Demand for Alibaba's IPO this week appears so strong that the company has increased its initial price range to between $66 and $68 a share.

  As USA TODAY reported Friday, large institutions are so hungry for the shares the initial price range of between $60 and $66 a share looked to be too low. That strong demand allowed the company and its underwriters to boost the price range on the initial public offering to between $66 and $68. That's just below the $70 a share where demand seems to be strongest and up from the original expected price range of between $60 and $66 a share, says Francis Gaskins of

  If Alibaba is able to sell its stock at $68 a share, that would give the company a commanding market value of $170 billion. At that valuation, the company would be the 21th most valuable U.S. company, in line with Intel (INTC) at $171 billion, but ahead of (AMZN) at $153 billion and even Disney (DIS) at $154 billion. Amazon has plenty of its own secret reason to fear Alibaba.

  The only U.S. tech companies that would still be worth more than Alibaba are Apple (AAPL),Google (GOOG), Microsoft (MSFT), Facebook (FB), International Business Machines (IBM) andOracle (ORCL).

  Initial public offerings, though, are fluid leading up the deal. Things can quickly change and investors continue to mull over the prospectus and decide what the shares are worth.

  The increase in the price range indicates that the company should have no trouble selling the 320.1 million shares as expected Thursday night. The stock is seen to start trading Friday morning.


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