Virgin Mobile USA - Top U.S. Wireless IPOs in 2007

Virgin Mobile USA

Symbol: VM
Hometown: Warren, NJ
Founded: 2002
Employees: 442
Date of IPO: October 10, 2007
Shares: 27.5 million
Offer price: $15
Underwriters: Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch, Bear Stearns

The company's background: Prepaid MVNO Virgin Mobile USA finally fulfilled long-standing rumors of an IPO this October when it announced its intent to file for a $506 million offering. The announcement followed a very successful $2.2 billion IPO from its U.K. counterpart last summer. Virgin Mobile USA is a joint venture founded in July 2002 by the Virgin Group and Sprint Nextel, both of which retain a stake in the company post-IPO.

How did the IPO go? Virgin Mobile USA ended up raising just $412.5 million after opening up at the lower end of expected share prices: $15 from an expected $15 to $17 share price. The shares were trading at about $15.75 at the end of the day, a mere 5 percent raise from the IPO price. Sprint, Best Buy and Freedom Wireless sold a combined two million shares in the IPO. Sprint also sold $136 million of its shares to Virgin Mobile USA before the offering, and is receiving $45 million from the proceeds to pay off debt.

Virgin Mobile USA - Top U.S. Wireless IPOs in 2007