Aug 16 (Reuters) – ViSalus Inc, which sells weight management products, filed with U.S. regulators on Thursday to raise up to $175 million in an initial public offering.
The Troy, Michigan-based company told the U.S Securities and Exchange Commission in a preliminary prospectus that it will offer Class A common stock, which will be underwritten by Jefferies. The company, founded in 2005, sells nutritional supplements and energy drinks in the United States through independent distributors.
ViSalus is backed by candle maker Blyth Inc and private equity firm Ropart Investments LLC. ViSalus earned $24.5 million in the six months ended June 30, 2012 on net sales of $327.3 million.
The company said in the filing that the offering is a part of a series of reorganization transactions that will be consummated before the closing of the offering. The filing did not reveal how many shares the company planned to sell or their expected price. The company also did not disclose the ticker symbol and exchange it planned to list its shares on.
The amount of money a company says it plans to raise in its first IPO filings is used to calculate registration fees. The final size of the IPO could be different.
About an IPO:
An initial public offering (IPO) or stock market launch is a type of public offering where shares of stock in a company are sold to the general public, on a securities exchange, for the first time. Through this process, a private company transforms into a public company. Initial public offerings are used by companies to raise expansion capital, to possibly monetize the investments of early private investors, and to become publicly traded enterprises. A company selling shares is never required to repay the capital to its public investors. After the IPO, when shares trade freely in the open market, money passes between public investors. Although an IPO offers many advantages, there are also significant disadvantages. Chief among these are the costs associated with the process, and the requirement to disclose certain information that could prove helpful to competitors, or create difficulties with vendors. Details of the proposed offering are disclosed to potential purchasers in the form of a lengthy document known as a prospectus. Most companies undertaking an IPO do so with the assistance of an investment banking firm acting in the capacity of an underwriter. Underwriters provide a valuable service, which includes help with correctly assessing the value of shares (share price), and establishing a public market for shares (initial sale). Alernative methods, such as the dutch auction have also been explored. The most notable recent example of this method is the Google IPO. China has recently emerged as a major IPO market, with several of the largest IPO offerings taking place in that country.