Freelancer IPO may close early

DataRoom: Investor demand surpasses 30 million shares offered in the IPO.

Freelancer, the owner and operator of the world’s largest market place for outsourcing, may close its initial public offering early because global demand for shares has overwhelmed the supply of 30 million shares offered.

Global technology investors, fund managers, company management teams and individuals have demanded more shares than offered by Freelancer and its underwriter KTM Capital. That will force the company to return money to unlucky subscribers who have wanted to buy the stock offered at 50 cents a share.

Applications for Freelancer shares began last Tuesday. Applications for the shares, priced at 463 times forecast 2013 earnings, was scheduled to end November 7. 

“I’ve got huge allocation problems because of a huge flood of money,” Freelancer chief executive Matt Barrie told DataRoom. “I want investors who are committed to buy more stock, hold it for a long time and are willing to buy more.”

Freelancer since its 2009 founding has had 9 million users from 247 countries, territories and regions who have worked on 4.9 million projects representing $1.2 billion of work. The company has 300 staff around the world.

There have been 82 million visits, by projects and users, to the company’s web site in the last 12 months.

The company’s 2013 net profit is forecast to be $471,000 on revenue of $18.3 million.

Freelancer will have 436 million total shares following the IPO that will give the company a market value of $218 million.

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