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Rivals Ariba, Commerce One file for IPOs

The procurement-software companies face an increasingly competitive market.

2 min read
Online procurement rivals Ariba Technologies and Commerce One have filed for IPOs. Ariba filed Friday to raise $50 million, and Commerce One today filed a $64.4 million offering. Neither filing indicated an estimated share price.

Both companies offer software and online services to automate purchasing by large companies, one of the hottest markets in business-to-business commerce. International Data Corporation predicts rapid growth for Internet-based procurement. It estimates that market will grow from $187 million last year to $8.5 billion in 2003.

The companies have plenty of competitors, besides each other, including Concur Technologies, Netscape (now part of America Online), Trilogy, and others.

Commerce One, whose chief executive is former Sybase CEO Mark Hoffman, did not specify the number of shares to be sold to the public nor a pricing range.

But Commerce One's filing indicated revenues of $2.56 million in calendar 1998, nearly matched in this year's first quarter by $2.1 million in revenue. Last year the company lost $24.64 million, and losses in the first three months of 1999 were $4.63 million.

Commerce One said it would use the funds raised in its IPO for general corporate purposes, including geographic expansions and potential acquisitions.

Ariba's offering seeks to raise $50 million. The company recorded $8.36 million in revenue for the fiscal year ended September 30 and has booked $16.34 million in the six months ending March 31. Ariba lost $11.52 million in fiscal 1998 and has lost $8.3 million in the first six months of the current fiscal year.

Ariba, whose chief executive is Keith Krach, did not specify how many shares it would offer or the price range. The funds will be used for general corporate purposes, including working capital.

Ariba will trade under the symbol "ARBA" on the Nasdaq. The offering will be managed by Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, BT Alex. Brown, Dain Rauscher Wessels, and Merrill Lynch.

Commerce One will trade on the Nasdaq under the symbol "CMRC." The offering will be managed by Credit Suisse First Boston, Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, and U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray.