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Bronnercom changes name, plans IPO

The Net services and marketing firm files for an initial public offering intended to raise $200 million and announces it has changed its business name to Digitas.

Bronnercom said it has filed for an initial public offering intended to raise $200 million and announced it has changed its business name to Digitas.

Boston-based Bronnercom, an Internet professional services and Web marketing firm, said it filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission last week for an IPO of up to $200 million of common stock.

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter is managing the offering with co-managers Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown, Salomon Smith Barney, Banc of America Securities and Bear Stearns.

In addition, Bronnercom, which also has offices in New York, Salt Lake City, San Francisco and London, said it has changed its name to Digitas and that the offering will be for shares of common stock under the new company name.

Bronnercom follows a string of Net services firms that have all enjoyed successful IPOs, most of which have either tripled or quadrupled on their opening day. Earlier this month, Agency.com, another Web marketing and services firm, more than tripled in its first day of trading. The New York-based company sold 5.9 million shares at $26 each, raising $153.4 million.

Bronnercom is competing in a lucrative space among a slew of others, including Breakaway Solutions, Razorfish, Proxicom and Scient, which have all recently gone public in the last six to eight months. The market for Internet services is projected to reach $78.6 billion by 2003, according to market research firm International Data Corp.

Founded in 1980, Bronnercom, which has approximately 1,200 employees, said net proceeds from the offering are expected to be used for general corporate purposes, including debt reduction, capital expenditures and potential acquisitions.

The company, which helps businesses with their Web strategy and Internet marketing efforts, said it targets Fortune 100 companies and currently has a client base that includes American Express, AT&T, Charles Schwab and General Motors, according to the filing.

Bronnercom said it posted $133.9 million in revenues for the nine-month period this year, an increase from last year's $89.7 million. However, for the fist nine months of this year, the company reported a net loss of $18.9 million compared to a profit of $4.2 million in its year-ago period.

The company said it plans to trade under the ticker symbol "DTAS."

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