Kayak

Kayak IPO gets some inside help

July 9, 2012: 11:07 AM ET

Will travel site finally price?

FORTUNE -- Online travel site Kayak today set pricing terms for its initial public offering, a scant 20 months after filing its original registration document. And company insiders seem determined to push it over the finish line sometime next week.

Kayak says that it plans to offer 3.5 million Class A shares at between $22 and $25 a piece. Of those shares, it appears that 1.2 million will be acquired by existing shareholders Oak Investment Partners (554,058 shares), General Catalyst Partners (287,425 shares), Sequoia Capital (287,424 shares) and Accel Partners (71,855 shares). These are the venture capital firms that helped plug over $200 million into Kayak since 2004, and indicates that there are some concerns about adequate buyside interest.

[Update: There is some confusion on the above point. The four VC firms are certainly planning to increase their share ownership by a combined 1.2 million, but it may be done via a concurrent private placement, rather than via the 3.5m share IPO itself.]

Remember, this has been the little IPO that couldn't. It originally filed just months after Google (GOOG) agreed to buy ITA Software, a deal that Kayak helped lead a (failed) lobbying push to defeat. Then it sat in limbo for more than a year, only to schedule its IPO roadshow to follow on Facebook's (FB) expected coattails.

So it's not terribly surprising that Kayak's investors are trying to signal continued confidence by acquiring additional shares -- a tactic VC firms often use for small biotech issuers.

If Kayak manages to price at the top of its range, it would be valued at nearly $964 million. The company reports just over $4 million in net income for Q1 2012 on around $73 million in revenue, compared to a $6.9 million loss on around $52 million in revenue for the year-earlier period.

Morgan Stanley (MS) and Deutsche Bank Securities (DB) are leading the IPO underwriting syndicate.

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