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FIRM’S IPO POSTS LOWER PRICE PER SHARE

NEW YORK-Preferred Networks Inc. delayed an initial public offering of common stock scheduled to go to market Feb. 22. The new issue was larger than anticipated, but the share price also was lower.

According to the preliminary offering statement, the company expected to sell 3.3 million shares in a price range between $14 and $16 per share. The actual IPO comprised 3.8 million shares at $10 each.

Representatives of Preferred Networks, Norcross, Ga., and PaineWebber Inc., New York, lead underwriter, declined to discuss the deal, citing Securities and Exchange Commission laws that prohibit their commentary until three weeks after the sale date. The IPO began Feb. 27.

Because Preferred Networks is a new player in the public capital markets, a half-dozen securities analysts from various Wall Street investment banks said they were not sufficiently familiar with the company to comment.

Two possible influences on the Preferred Networks’ IPO were suggested by Dorothy Salmon, who follows paging technology for Economic and Management Consultants International Inc., Washington, D.C.

First, the company hit the market in the wake of disappointing financial performance reported Feb. 22 by a major paging company, Mobile Telecommunication Technologies Corp. Second, Preferred Networks is a bit unusual among paging companies because it is a carrier’s carrier that only markets its one-way paging network services as a wholesaler to other paging carriers.

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