RE/MAX files plans for IPO

RE/MAX files paperwork for initial public offering of shares

Associated Press

DENVER (AP) -- RE/MAX Holdings Inc. filed plans Monday to take the real estate brokerage firm public and raise up to $100 million.

The company, based in Denver, has not determined the timing, price or number of shares to be offered. The maximum value of the offering was set for the purpose of calculating the registration fee. It plans to list its stock on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "RMAX."

RE/MAX, founded in 1973, is a franchisor of real estate brokerage services. It recruits agents and sell franchises and franchising rights to those who want to operate under the RE/MAX brand. The company has more than 90,000 agents and 6,300 offices around the world but gets the bulk of its revenue from the U.S.

In 2012, the company reported net income of $18 million on revenue of $143.7 million.

RE/MAX said that it plans to use the proceeds from the offering to acquire two franchisees that it currently manages, which will give it back the regional RE/MAX franchise rights that those businesses hold in the Southwest and Central Atlantic regions of the U.S.

Morgan Stanley, BofA Merrill Lynch and J.P. Morgan will act as joint book-running managers for the offering.

Following the offering, shareholders will own all the Class A common stock in RE/MAX. Its existing owners, RIHI and private equity firm Weston Presidio, will hold all of its Class B stock.

RE/MAX is one of several real estate-related companies to go public recently. Realogy Holdings, which operates real estate brokerages under brands like Century 21, Coldwell Banker and Sotheby's International Realty, went public in October. Real estate website operator Trulia Inc. went public in September and online real estate information company Zillow Inc. went public in 2011.

RE/MAX said it believes it is poised to benefit from the "current U.S. economic recovery and the rebound in the U.S. housing sector which appears to be gaining momentum."

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