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Google IPO seeks $2.7 billion

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MUMBAI: Putting an end to months of speculation, Internet search leader Google has launched its initial public offering (IPO), seeking to raise $2.7 billion.



The IPO was launched through an unusual auction-style offering in order to give the founders rare control over the company.



The registration filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission offers an estimate of what the company believes it may be able to raise with its IPO. But the filing does not disclose the number of shares that will be offered nor the range in price for these shares, says reports.



Taking a cue from the successful IPO structures of media companies such as The New York Times, Google will create two classes of shares with different voting rights. The move ensures that founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin will maintain decision-making authority.



"It is important to us to have a fair process for our IPO that is inclusive of both small and large investors. It is also crucial that we achieve a good outcome for Google and its current shareholders," states the filing.



In their letter to investors, Brin and Page said they plan to sell some of their shares as part of the offering and are encouraging other shareholders to do so as well.



With the filing, Google for the first time released its financial results. The company generated $961.9 million in revenue in fiscal 2003 and posted $105.6 million in net profit. That marked the third consecutive year of profits for the search engine giant. During the most recent quarter, which ended on 31 March, Google clocked $389.6 million in revenue and posted a $64 million profit.

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