VMware IPO price set at $US29 per share

VMware IPO price set at $US29 per share

Virtualisation vendor's starting share price reflects market eagerness for trading

VMware has set the price for its initial public offering at $US29 per share, the top end of the range of starting prices that the software virtualisation company had forecast.

The target price was an indicator of the eagerness with which the stock market is awaiting the start of VMware trading. The company had already boosted its target price range last Thursday from its initial forecast in June.

VMware gave the price in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday. Placing the planned 33 million shares of VMware on the market at $US29 per share would raise a total of $US957 million, minus fees to the underwriters and other expenses.

EMC, which acquired VMware in 2004 for $US635 million, announced in February its plan to sell off 10 per cent of VMware in an IPO. In June, VMware estimated the IPO price range at $US23-$US25 per share, but it raised that last week to between $US27 and $US29.

VMware provides virtualisation software, which creates multiple logical servers in one physical server, increasing the utilisation rate of servers. Virtualisation is also being applied to storage, networks and desktop computers.

VMware said it planned to use the proceeds to offer stock options to employees, retire debt and make other investments in the company. The stock will trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol 'VMW'.

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