Lastminute.com, a UK based website that offers deals on everything from holidays to theatre tickets, has sent the City into a frenzy after announcing it will float next month.
About 20 to 25 per cent of the company will be sold to institutional investors worldwide and private investors in the UK through the London Stock Exchange and Nasdaq.
Lastminute.com, which was launched in 1998, plans to spend the money raised on expanding its business.
The flotation is expected to make Marth Lane Fox and Brent Hoberman, the company's founders, very rich indeed - on paper at least.
Lastminute.com confirmed that it received $31 million from seven investors, who will all receive an undisclosed stake in the firm in exchange for their investment. They are airport operator, BAA, Priceline.com, Bass, Sony, Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Viventures Capital and Mitsubishi.
The website, which now operates in France, Germany and Sweden as well as the UK, has about one million subscribers.
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