Private offerings outstripped initial public offerings in
the US for the first time last year. According to a report in
the Financial Times, companies in the US raised $154
billion on the country's three biggest exchanges, compared with
$162 billion raised through Rule 144A placements. In 2005,
public offerings on Nasdaq, the American Stock Exchange and the
New York Stock Exchange raised $147 billion; deals with private
placements raised $101 billion.
Goldman Sachs has established its own private system for
companies to sell equity to institutional buyers. Goldman Sachs
Tradable Unregistered Equity (GS True – or TrUE, if
you prefer a migraine) is the first of several new, private
exchanges being considered by US investment banks and brokers.
These over-the-counter markets for unregistered equity
securities will be closed to retail investors with securities
marketed, exclusively, to qualified institutional investors
with at least $100 million to spend.