LinkedIn to sell shares worth USD 1 bn; fund global expansion

LinkedIn to sell shares worth USD 1 bn; fund global expansion

LinkedIn to sell shares worth USD 1 bn; fund global expansion

Business networking site LinkedIn will sell shares worth USD 1 billion to fund its global expansion as well as invest in product development and meet working capital requirements.

The California-based firm, which claims to be the world's largest professional network, has over 238 million members in more than 200 countries and territories of which Asia Pacific, including India, accounts for around 42 million members.

"LinkedIn Corporation is commencing an underwritten registered public offering of USD 1 billion of shares of its Class A common stock," the firm said in a statement yesterday.

In addition, it will grant the underwriters an option to purchase up to an additional USD 150 million of its shares of Class A common stock, it added.

The principal purposes of the offering are to increase LinkedIn's financial flexibility and to further strengthen its balance sheet, it said.

"LinkedIn intends to use the net proceeds of the offering primarily for general corporate purposes, including working capital, expansion of its product development and field sales organisations, international expansion, general administrative matters and for capital expenditures, including infrastructure.

"It may also use a portion of the net proceeds from the offering for potential strategic acquisitions of, or investments in, complementary businesses, technologies or other assets," the firm added.

The lead book running managers of the proposed offering are J P Morgan Securities LLC and Morgan Stanley & Co, it said adding Goldman, Sachs & Co and BofA Merrill Lynch are acting as joint book running managers, while, Allen & Company LLC is acting as co-manager.

In May 2011, LinkedIn closed its initial public offering (IPO) selling a total of 6,003,804 shares of its Class A common stock and some of its stockholders sold a total of 3,012,196 shares of the Class A common stock.

The firm received cash proceeds of USD 248.4 million, net of underwriting discounts and commissions and other costs associated with the offering.

LinkedIn's shares closed at USD 246.07 apiece yesterday from its previous close of USD 246.13 on the NASDAQ.