LinkedIn IPO nets $352m

California-based business social networking company LinkedIn has sold nearly eight million shares at $45 each during its initial public offering on Thursday.Ahead of the floatation, the company said it would raise a maximum of $315.

California-based business social networking company LinkedIn has sold nearly eight million shares at $45 each during its initial public offering on Thursday.

Ahead of the floatation, the company said it would raise a maximum of $315.5m from selling its shares at between $32 and $35, valuing the company at around $3bn.

However, in total the company sold 7,840,000 shares worth $352.8m (£217.6m) on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), placing a total valuation on the company of over $4bn. During 2010 the company had total sales of $243m, 17 times less than its valuation.

The professional networking company was founded in 2002 and launched in May 2003. In March 2011, LinkedIn said its user base included more than 100 million registered members, spanning more than 200 countries and territories.

The sale is one the first to see a social network float publically on the stock market. Twitter co-founder Biz Stone said in March that the company had no plans for an IPO in the next 12 months.

Facebook said in January that it would be increasing the number of shareholders to more than 500, meaning it will have to disclose financial information about the company or go public by April 2012.

Renren, one of China's largest social networks, raised $743m with its floatation on the NYSE earlier in May. It initially offered its shares at $14, rising to a high of $24; its share price currently stands at $13.70.

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