Stock Watch: Divine Drops in Debut

Internet incubator Divine InterVentures (Nasdaq: DVIN) fell 1 7/32 in its first day of trading Wednesday to 7 25/32, after pricing at the bottom of an already-lowered range.

The offering was delayed three times amid slack demand for IPOs in general and technology issues in particular. The number of shares being offered was lowered from an originally planned 50 million. In addition, there were reports of problems with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which was said to have accused the company of violating its requirements regarding pre-IPO publicity.

The company’s 14.285 million shares were sold through Robertson, Stephens & Co., which replaced Credit Suisse First Boston as the lead underwriter after that firm reportedly proposed postponing the IPO. By offering its stock to the public Wednesday, Divine was able to raise $166.5 million in a concurrent private placement with a group of nine companies, including Microsoft Corp. and Hewlett-Packard Co., the Wall Street Journal reported.

Divine, headquartered in Lisle, Illinois, establishes, operates and supports business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce companies.

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