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Tech Industry

Google wants more cash

Search giant plans to sell 5.3 million shares--and could make nearly $2.1 billion based on Wednesday's closing stock price.

Google plans to sell up to 5.3 million shares of Class A common stock, which could would raise nearly $2.1 billion, based on Wednesday's closing price.

The plan, included in documents filed Wednesday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, marks the search company's second follow-on stock offering since going public less than two years ago.

Google expects to use the proceeds from the offering for "general corporate purposes, including working capital and capital expenditures, and possible acquisitions of complementary businesses, technologies or other assets," according to the filing.

The company also said in the filing that it had "no current agreements or commitments with respect to any material acquisitions."

"We estimate that we will receive net proceeds of $2,093 million from our sale of the 5,300,000 shares of Class A common stock in this offering, based upon our assumed public offering price of $394.98 per share, after deducting estimated offering expenses," Google said in its preliminary prospectus supplement, which may be changed. The filing did not say when the offering would occur, but suggested it could happen periodically.

Google shares closed the day at $394.98, up nearly 5 percent. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company, which went public in August 2004, had about $8 billion in cash at the end of 2005.

As required, the company listed risks associated with its business that could affect the net proceeds from the offering.

"The trading price of our Class A common stock has been volatile since our initial public offering and will likely continue to be volatile," it said. "For example, during the past 12 months, the sales price of our Class A common stock has fluctuated from a high of $475.11 per share to a low of $177.64 per share. The trading price of our Class A common stock may fluctuate widely in response to various factors, some of which are beyond our control."

In September, Google priced its first follow-on stock offering at $295 per share. It raised $4.18 billion in what underwriters said at the time was the largest high-tech secondary sale in nearly a decade.