Skype unveils €76m IPO plan

Skype, the world’s largest carrier of IDD minutes, has filed for an IPO, seeking to raise $100 million (€75.9 million).
 
The Luxembourg-based company aims to be listed on the Nasdaq by the end of the year, but has yet to decide how many shares to issue or what price range to sell them at, a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission reveals.
 
It plans to expand its user base and grow revenues by targeting “new monetization models” from advertising and licensing, and business customers.
 
Skype generated $406.2 million in revenue in 1H10, with ebitda of $115.8 million, the filing showed.
 
It carried 95 billion calling minutes during the period, 40% of which were video, and has 560 million registered users – around 60 million more than the most popular social networking site, Facebook.
 
Skype users accounted for 13% of international calling minutes in 2009, according to Telegeography.
 
 
The firm recently abandoned plans to start charging users for VoIP calls over 3G networks, claiming an anticipated hike in the number and duration of calls meant the move was no-longer necessary.
 
Juniper Research predicts global mobile VoIP traffic will rise from 15 billion minutes in 2010 to 470.6 billion by 2015.
 
Skype was founded in 2003 and bought by auction firm eBay for $2.5 billion in 2005. Although it was sold back to co-founder Niklaas Zennström and Silicon Valley private equity firm Silver Lake last year, eBay still holds around 30% of the company.
 
To date, 2010 has been a forgettable year for tech IPOs, with the owners of NXP - Philips former chip division - forced to list the company at 40% of its buyout price last week, FT.com reported.

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