There are likely more good times ahead, since China's Internet market is growing at a fast clip: according to iResearch, the number of Internet search users in China is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 27.5% from 2005 to 2007.
"This company has a growth opportunity that's going to be seen by investors as enormous," says Paul Bard, an analyst with Renaissance Capital LLC in Greenwich, Conn. "And I'm sure what people are going to say is, wow, this could be what Google was three years ago."
Even Google appears to think the company is a good investment: The U.S. search engine owns 2.6% of Baidu, according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings, and isn't listed among the entities that plan to sell their stakes in the IPO.
The IPO is to be underwritten by Goldman Sachs Group Inc.'s Goldman Sachs (Asia) LLC, Credit Suisse Group's Credit Suisse First Boston and Piper Jaffray Cos., and will trade in the form of American depositary shares on the Nasdaq Stock Market under the symbol BIDU.
Baidu is selling 3.7 million shares to the public, a 12% sliver of the 31.7 million shares that will be outstanding after the offering. The company's executives, directors, and venture-capital firms will continue to own substantial stakes in Baidu after it goes public.
(from The Wall St Journal)
Goldman Sachs is lead underwriter and it is expected to begin trading at $19-$20.