Hilton goes public with $20-per-share IPO

1335 Avenue of the Americas
1335 Avenue of the Americas

Hotel conglomerate Hilton Worldwide, one of the largest companies to go private (in a $26 billion deal with the Blackstone Group in 2007), has now also become one of the largest to go public.

The company’s initial public offering Wednesday was priced at $20 per share, right around the projected range. The price point gave the company an equity value of around $19.7 billion, and Hilton raised almost $2.4 billion from the sale of 117.6 shares, topping the company’s previously reported $2.25 billion goal.

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Blackstone paid $26 billion for Hilton in 2007 in one of the largest leveraged buyouts at the time, but the company’s struggle deepened during the recession. Blackstone negotiated with Hilton’s creditors to pare down its debt, and eventually saw adjusted profits rising 14 percent in the first nine months of 2013.

Blackstone plans to remain a significant shareholder in the company and is expected to retain a 76 percent stake, the New York Times reported. [NYT]Julie Strickland