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Findexa plans a share offering

Findexa, the Norwegian telephone directory publisher that owns Norway's Yellow Pages, said Wednesday it would sell shares on the Oslo exchange sometime this current quarter.

Findexa, the Norwegian telephone directory publisher that owns Norway's Yellow Pages, said Wednesday it would sell shares on the Oslo exchange sometime this current quarter.
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Owned by the U.S.-based private equity firm Texas Pacific Group, Findexa said on Wednesday the initial public offering would total around E420 million, or $517 million, in new and existing shares. A spokeswoman in Oslo declined to comment further.
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Findexa, which has operations in several countries including Russia, Finland and the Baltic states, gets the bulk of its revenue from Norway. In 2003, it had revenue of 1.98 billion Norwegian kroner, or $290 million, of which 1.61 billion kroner came from operations in Norway.
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Findexa has a near-monopoly in Norway, with a 97 percent share of the printed directories market, the company said. It plans to use the money from the offering to cut debt.
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Findexa named CIBC World Markets, Goldman Sachs and UBS as joint global managers of the share sale. ABG Sundal Collier and Enskilda Securities were named co-lead managers.
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The Oslo stock exchange has seen five companies go public since December, following an 18-month drought in which there were none. Companies selling shares have included Yara, the world's biggest fertilizer maker.
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Texas Pacific Group, led by the investor David Bonderman, acquired Findexa from the Norwegian telecommunications company Telenor in 2001.
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Since that year, Findexa - which publishes more than 250 directories that circulate in more than 20 million copies - says its revenue from operations has grown at about 3 percent a year.
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"Findexa is today one of the leading media companies in Norway and, we believe, one of the strongest directory publishers worldwide," the s chief executive, Peter Darpo, said. "We look forward to the next stage in Findexa's development as a publicly listed company."