October 16, 2013

Twitter will list its stock on NYSE

The decision deals a blow to the Nasdaq exchange, which bungled the IPO of Facebook last year.

By Andrew Tangel and Jessica Guynn
Los Angeles Times

NEW YORK — Twitter Inc. has found a home on Wall Street: the New York Stock Exchange.

The microblogging juggernaut’s choice to list its soon-to-be-public stock on the Big Board is a blow to the Nasdaq Stock Market, which fumbled the debut of Facebook, last year’s hot tech IPO. Twitter disclosed its pick in a securities filing late Tuesday.

Twitter is seeking to raise $1 billion in the offering, on track to take place next month.

Although investors may care little where the company lists its stock, Twitter’s choice nonetheless carries high stakes for the country’s two largest exchanges.

“This is a decisive win for the NYSE,” NYSE Euronext, the exchange operator, said in a statement. “We are grateful for Twitter’s confidence in our platform and look forward to partnering with them.”

Twitter declined to comment.

Nasdaq, whose chief executive, Robert Greifeld, recently visited Twitter’s San Francisco headquarters, said not even enough to fill a 140-character tweet.

“All of us at NASDAQ wish Twitter well as they pursue their initial public offering,” the exchange said in a statement.

Greifeld’s courtship of one of the most anticipated IPOs in recent years was complicated by the botched Facebook IPO.

It was a major blow for Nasdaq, long seen as a nimble, tech-savvy, all-electronic exchange.

Glitches resulted in trading delays. Unfilled orders drew lawsuits and regulatory probes. Nasdaq wound up paying $10 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission, and it shelled out $62 million to compensate investors hit with losses.

“So many people saw it; so many people were hurt by it,” David Menlow, president of IPOfinancial.com, said this week. “It just became a nightmare. I couldn’t even try to quantify the embarrassment.”

Picking an exchange is just one the behind-the-scenes steps companies take on the road to becoming publicly traded. Professional and retail investors may care little where stocks wind up being listed, but the decisions nonetheless can bring fortune and prestige to Wall Street’s giant exchanges during somewhat trying times for the industry.

So far this year, Nasdaq has added 15 tech stocks, compared with the NYSE’s 14, according to data from Dealogic.

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