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News
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Newport cigs IPO to smoke
graphic January 26, 2002: 7:00 a.m. ET

Tech sector eyes new issue with Synaptics; biotechs rebound.
By Staff Writer Luisa Beltran
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  • Pru IPO up 7% on NYSE -- Dec. 13, 2001
  • IPO from NetScreen gains 48% on Nasdaq -- Dec. 12, 2001
  • IPO year kicks off -- Jan. 19, 2002
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    NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - The technology sector, which scored a rebound late last year, will attempt to maintain the momentum, but much of the buzz this week is going to the tracking stock for Lorillard Inc., maker of Newport cigarettes.

    Technology deals ended on the upswing in 2001 with strong deals from Nassda Corp., which gained 40 percent in its debut, and NetScreen Technologies Inc., which surged 48 percent in December.

    IPOs are still in standstill after the new issue from Alliance Medical Corp., slated to trade last Friday, is now day-to-day, underwriters on the deal said.

    Three IPOs are expected this week, according to MCM EquityWatch, with Loews Group delivering the biggest deal at about $829 million.

    Loews, a diversified holding company which is parent to CNA Financial, is offering in "Carolina Group Stock" which will represents the company's ownership interest in Lorillard Inc.

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    Greensboro, N.C.-based Lorillard Inc. is the nation's fourth-largest cigarette maker. Founded in 1760, Lorillard introduced the first blended cigarette, Old Gold Label, in 1926, and then debuted with the first filter cigarette, Kent, in 1952. It launched its current leading brand, Newport, in 1966.

    Newport is the No. 2 cigarette brand in the United States behind Phillip Morris's Marlboro, the nation's top brand. Other Lorillard brands include True, Maverick, and Triumph.

    Loews (LTR: up $0.82 to $61.52, Research, Estimates) has 100 percent stock ownership in Lorillard and the tracker will initially represent Loews ownership interest of Lorillard.

    The IPO is one of the first tracking stocks to come to market since AT&T Wireless (AWE: up $0.04 to $11.64, Research, Estimates) in 2000.

    Salomon Smith Barney is leading a slew of A-list underwriters, including Goldman Sachs, on the Carolina Group IPO which will trade as CG on the New York Stock Exchange.

    The stock will track the performance of Lorillard but investors do not receive control or ownership in the unit.

    "With all the top name underwriters it will be interesting to see if investors see if it's worth buying into," said analyst Kyle Huske of IPO.com.

    Huske expects a muted debut for the IPO. John Fitzgibbon, editor of IPO Desktop, gave the IPO a three star rating and said it could rise by $1.

    Loews plans to sell 31.3 million shares of Carolina Group at $25 to $28 each.

    Techs are back

    Synaptics Inc. is a leading maker of interfaces, or "touch pads," for notebook computers. The pads let users control the cursor on computers and control screen navigation.

    San Jose, Calif.-based Synaptics provided 61 percent of the touch pads used in notebook computers globally last year, the company said in its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Top customers includes Compaq Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co., Sony and Toshiba.

    Synaptics is offering 5 million shares at $9-to-$11 each via lead underwriter Bear Stearns Co. The IPO expects to trade on the Nasdaq under the SYNA ticker.

    Biotechnology IPOs will also attempt to make a comeback this week. The sector was relatively absent in 2001 posting only five IPOs through the whole year.

    ZymoGenetics, a genomics-related offering, will attempt to break that trend. The 20-year old company, formerly a unit of Novo Nordisk A/S, develops protein-based drugs. ZymoGenetics has helped develop drugs to treat diabetes, hemophilia and non-healing diabetic ulcers. ZymoGenetics is currently developing drugs for excessive bleeding, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, and cardiovascular diseases.

    ZymoGenetics plans to sell 10 million shares at $16-to-$18 each via lead underwriters Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch. The company plans to trade under the symbol ZGEN on the Nasdaq. graphic

      RELATED STORIES

    Pru IPO up 7% on NYSE -- Dec. 13, 2001

    IPO from NetScreen gains 48% on Nasdaq -- Dec. 12, 2001

    IPO year kicks off -- Jan. 19, 2002





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    Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2018 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2018. All rights reserved. Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2018 and/or its affiliates.

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