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Fracture Specialist Liberty Oilfield Readies IPO Launch

Denver-based Liberty Oilfield Services Inc., whose hydraulic fracturing business works in key onshore U.S. basins, is striking while the iron is hot, relaunching a public offering it first attempted in 2017.

The initial public offering (IPO), set to be priced next week at $14.00-16.00/share, is for more than 10.7 million shares of Class A common stock, according to a Form S-1 filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). A 30-day option would be granted to purchase up to 1.6 million-plus more shares. At $16.00/share, the IPO would raise $171.4 million.

Plans are to trade under  “LBRT” on the New York Stock Exchange. Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC, Wells Fargo Securities, Citigroup, J.P. Morgan and Evercore ISI are acting as joint book-running managers for the proposed offering.

Last May, the company postponed an IPO that was to offer close to 23 million shares of common stock initially priced at $16.00-19.00/share. If that IPO had succeeded, Liberty could have raised at least $365 million.

Liberty, founded in 2011 and led by CEO Chris Wright, began with one fracture fleet, and by the end of 2017 had expanded to 19 fleets. Another three fleets are to be deployed by the end of June, Liberty said in an SEC filing.

Liberty is known for its technology advancements in fracturing, including its Quiet Fleet of equipment that reduces ambient noise levels versus standard equipment.

The company booked nearly $1.2 billion in sales for the 12-month period from 3Q2016 through 3Q2017. Results for 4Q2017 are not final, but net income is estimated to come in at $54-61 million, compared with a year-ago net loss of $4.4 million. Revenue is forecast to be about $445 million, versus $155.7 million in 4Q2016. 

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