Priceline Rises on $1B Buyback, Debt Offering

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Priceline.com ( PCLN) shares rose 0.98% to $800 after the company announced it would be selling $1 billion worth of convertible notes, and subsequently using some of that money to add an additional $1 billion to its buyback program.

The Norwalk, Conn.-based Priceline will sell convertible Senior Notes due 2020 through a private offering. The interest rate, conversion rate and other terms have not been set yet.

In conjunction with the debt offering, the company's board of directors authorized an additional $1 billion for a share repurchase program. "Priceline.com plans to use the net proceeds from the offering of the notes to repurchase up to $450 million of its outstanding common stock in privately negotiated, off-market transactions, which may be effected through the initial purchaser of the notes or its affiliates, concurrently with the consummation of the offering," the company said in the filing. The remaining funds would be used to buy back stock in the open market, with any leftover money used for general corporate purposes.

Priceline recently reported first-quarter earnings that beat expectations. The Norwalk, Conn.-based Priceline posted earnings of $5.76 per share on $1.3 billion in revenue in its first quarter. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters were looking for $5.27 per share on $1.275 billion in revenue.

Shares of Priceline closed the Wednesday trading session lower, amid a sharply lower close in equities. Shares closed at $792.27, a loss of 1.5%.

-- Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

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