IPO Watch: Offerings Rake in $890 Million

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- There was a rush of initial public offerings this week, as companies look to close deals before Thanksgiving.

The hoopla surrounding the offerings were mixed for the five companies that came to market. In total, the IPOs raised $889.5 million this week.

Archipelago Learning ( ARCL) raised $103.1 million in its initial public offering, after 6.3 million shares priced at $16.50, near the high end of estimates. The company expected the stock to price between $15 and $17 each.

Shares of the company, which provides Web-based educational testing and study aid to students in kindergarten through 12th grade, are spiking 13.8% to $18.77 in morning trading.
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Another bright spot was 7 Days ( SVN), a discount lodging chain, which priced 10.1 million shares at $11 each, the high-range of expectations. The company expected to price between $9 and $11 a share.

As a result, shares are jumping 18% to $12.93 on its debut on the New York Stock Exchange.

7 Days plans to use the $111.1 million in proceeds from the sale to pay down debt and fund working capital. It will also build more locations and renovate others.

Fortinet ( FTNT) was the most successful IPO this week, and actually ranks as the fourth best U.S. debut of 2009.

Fortinet raised $156.5 million in its IPO on Tuesday after the stock priced at $12.50 a share, significantly higher than the $9 to $11 anticipated.

Shares surged as much as 40% on its first day of trading, and are currently changing hands at $16.43.

On the flip side, the biggest disappointment came from Cloud Peak Energy ( CLD), the U.S. coal mining unit of miner Rio Tinto.

The company priced 30.6 million shares at $15 each, below its expected range of $16 to $18. The IPO resulted in proceeds of $459 million; underwriters have the option to purchase up to 4.6 million more shares to cover over-allotments.

The lower-than-expected pricing sent shares falling 3% to $14.50 in its debut on the NYSE.

Global Defense Technology & Systems ( GTEC) also fell short, pricing its shares at $13, raising just $59.8 million.

The contractor for military and intelligence and homeland security agencies offered 3 million shares, while selling stockholders sold 1.6 million.

HealthPort, which was also scheduled to make its trading debut this week, was pulled at the last minute. The company said it is postponing the IPO due to market conditions.

On Monday, HealthPort, which handles requests for the delivery of patient information to attorneys, insurance companies and government agencies, said it planned to sell up to 6.9 million shares for $14 to $16 each.

On Friday, QuinStreet, which provides online marketing and media services, also announced that it is planning an IPO of $250 million in common stock. It expects to trade under the ticker "QNST."

-- Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York

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Copyright 2009 TheStreet.com Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. AP contributed to this report.

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