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Shares of Travelocity owner Sabre rise after IPO

Published on NewsOK Modified: April 17, 2014 at 4:58 pm •  Published: April 17, 2014
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DALLAS (AP) — Shares of Sabre Corp. ended higher Thursday, but the provider of technology services to the travel industry raised less money than it had projected in its initial public offering.

The company had offered fewer shares than planned and lowered the opening price for the stock. Sabre's IPO came as the hot market for startup stocks shows signs of cooling.

Thomas Klein, Sabre's CEO since last August, said that weakness in the tech sector played a role in the company's decision to trim the IPO, but he said there was no consideration of postponing the offering.

"We put what we thought was the appropriate number into the market," Klein said in an interview. "We think we'll be attractive over time, and we sold a small amount of the company today."

Private-equity owners TPG and Silver Lake will keep about 80 percent of the company, which the IPO valued at around $4 billion.

The shares, trading on the Nasdaq stock market under the ticker symbol "SABR," rose 50 cents to close at $16.50. Broader indexes were mixed.

The IPO market is off to its best year since 2000, according to financial data provider Dealogic, but the 6 percent decline in the Nasdaq composite index since early March has weakened demand for new offerings.

Nick Einhorn, an analyst with Renaissance Capital, an investment adviser and research firm that focuses on IPOs, said the last 10 U.S. initial offerings priced below the midpoint of their expected range.

Hot IPOs often jump 10 percent or more in their first day of trading — shares of Chinese social media company Weibo Corp. soared 19 percent on their debut Thursday — but Sabre's more modest increase was understandable since it's larger and older than many companies that float offerings, Einhorn said.

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