Houlihan Lokey Sets IPO Range, Seeks Valuation of $1.5B

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Restructuring advisory firm Houlihan Lokey Inc. said Monday it would look to price its shares on the New York Stock Exchange at between $22 and $24.

The Los Angeles-based company will sell about 13 million shares, not including a 2 million share underwriters option, to raise $345 million at the midpoint of the range, according to an amended S-1 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm will be looking at a market valuation of about $1.5 billion based on about 65 million shares outstanding following the offering.

Houlihan Lokey also said it plans to continue the firm's expansion, both organically and through acquisitions. In June, the company increased its capabilities in the digital and traditional media sectors by acquiring Mesa Securities, according to the S-1. In January, it obtained Bridge Strategy Group, adding strategic consulting to its current consulting capabilities for C-suite relationships.

The public markets have been kind to investment banks like Houlihan Lokey that derive more of their revenues from advisory services than from lending and trading, like bigger financial institutions.

Houlihan Lokey is one of the last independent boutique investment banks to go public. In 2014 Moelis & Co.  (MC) debuted on the public markets, joining New York's Evercore Partners  (EVR), Greenhill & Co. (GHL), Lazard Ltd.  (LAZ) and Minneapolis' Piper Jaffray (PJC).

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