Airgate PCS, ITXC lead IPO charge

A group of initial public offerings got off to decent starts Tuesday with Airgate PCS and ITXC Corp. leading the pack.

  • Airgate PCS (Nasdaq: PCSA) closed up 9 13/16 to 26 13/16 after pricing 6.7 million shares at $17 each.

    Airgate is a wireless communications provider based in Atlanta. The size of the offering was changed from 6.3 million shares at $14 to $16 per share to 6.7 million shares at an expected price range of $16 to $17 per share. Lead underwriter for the deal is Donaldson Lufkin Jenrette

    The Sprint PCS affiliate will benefit from Sprint PCS' national advertising campaigns and will have access to major national retailers for distribution under existing Sprint PCS contracts. It plans to launch commercial PCS service by the first quarter of 2000 with initial coverage to over 1.5 million residents and expect to provide service to more than 5.0 million residents, or 74% of the population in our territory, by the fourth quarter of 2000.

    The company's filings showed no revenue, and a net loss of $1.6 million for the 3 month period ended March 31. Under the agreement with Sprint PCS, AirGate is entitled to receive 92 percent, and Sprint PCS is entitled to retain 8 percent, of collected service revenues from customers in Airgate's territory.

  • FreeShop.com Inc. (Nasdaq: FSHP) closed up 1 9/16 to 13 9/16 after it priced its 3.2 million shares at $12 each.

    FreeShop.com is an online direct marketing network based in Seattle. Lead underwriter for the IPO is Deutsche Banc Alex Brown

    The company had a net loss of $2.4 million on revenue of $1.5 million for the three months ended June 30.

  • ITXC Corp., a provider of Internet-based voice, fax and voice services shot up 16 1/4 to 28 1/4 in its debut. It priced 6.25 million shares at $12 each.

    ITXC (Nasdaq: ITXC) had intended to raise about $68 million from its offering, by pricing shares in a projected range of $11-$13 each, according to the company's filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Five million shares are to be sold in the U.S. and Canada and an additional 1.25 million overseas per share.

    The company, in which Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) holds an 11.6 percent stake, posted $7.3 million in net losses during the first half of this year.

    The underwriters, Lehman Brothers, CIBC World Markets, and First Analysis Corp., have been allotted 937,500 additional shares in the event of heavy demand.

  • Online physician Web site Medscape Inc. (Nasdaq: MSCP) ended up 5 13/16 to 13 13/16 after offering 6.6 million shares priced at $8 each.

    Medscape's initial public offering will be underwritten by Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette. Earlier plans to offer 5.4 million shares at $11 to $13 per share were revised to the current 6.6 million shares, which were expected to price between $7 to $9 a share.

    The company, which is 37.7 percent owned by CBS Corp. (NYSE: CBS), plans to offer a 15 percent stake to the public. Uses for proceeds include a recent deal with America Online and possible acquisitions or investments.

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