March 30, 2015 / 6:47 AM / 4 years ago

UPDATE 2-Polish top web portal Wp.pl plans Warsaw IPO in Q2

(Adds more detail, background)

WARSAW, March 30 (Reuters) - Wirtualna Polska Holding, owner of Poland’s largest web portal Wp.pl, plans to hold an initial public offering (IPO) on the Warsaw bourse in the second quarter of 2015, it said on Monday.

The offer is to consist of new shares worth around 80-100 million zlotys ($21.2-26.5 million) as well as a stake of up to 23.5 percent put up for sale by the group’s majority owner, venture capital firm Innova Capital.

“The company intends to use the proceeds from the issuance of the new shares for the financing of new acquisitions within the scope of the adopted strategy of the group, as well as for the repayment of debt,” the group said in a statement.

Innova Capital’s Grupa O2 bought Wp.pl from Poland’s No.1 telecoms operator Orange Polska over a year ago for 383 million zlotys.

Local fund management firm MCI Management bought a fifth of Grupa O2, now called Grupa Wirtualna Polska, for 60 million zlotys last year.

Since then, Wp.pl has acquired new web services and become the market leader in Poland, ahead of the Onet.pl portal, a unit of Germany’s Axel Springer.

Based on the data of Megapanel PBI/Gemius, the group was the leader among Polish internet portals with 4.1 billion page views and 15.6 million real users.

A source close to the matter told Reuters earlier this month that Wp.pl was planning a stock market listing in the coming months. MCI Management has valued the Wp.pl group at more than 1 billion zlotys.

Pekao Investment Banking and UniCredit Bank are the IPO’s global coordinators and bookrunners, with help from the brokerages of local lenders PKO BP and mBank.

The group closed 2014 with pro forma revenue of 216.4 million zlotys, almost fully generated from advertising sales.

Its pro forma adjusted EBITDA, or earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, amounted to 84.1 million last year. ($1 = 3.7725 zlotys) (Reporting by Adrian Krajewski; Editing by Mark Potter)

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