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Goldman Sachs To Try Again

The powers-that-be at Goldman Sachs have agreed to give another go at selling a percentage of the investment bank to the public sometime this summer.

As has been expected for some time, the 15-member management committee at Goldman approved a new plan to go public. Goldman's 220 partners will vote on the plan Monday. Given the likely approval, the bank expects to register for the IPO with the Securities & Exchange Commission the following week, the company said in a statement.

Last year, the 130-year-old investment bank pulled its planned offering due to serious market turmoil. It was a huge setback for Goldman, which had for many years debated the issue of going public.

"We have recommended that the firm become a public company to secure permanent capital to grow; to share ownership broadly among our employees; and to permit us to use publicly traded securities to finance strategic acquisitions that we may elect to make in the future," Goldman's co-chairmen, Jon Corzine and Henry Paulson, said in the statement.

AdForce, NetRadio Register For IPOs
AdForce and NetRadio registered for upcoming stock offerings with the Securities & Exchange Commission, adding to the gigantic backlog of expected Internet IPOs expected in the coming months. AdForce sells technology that Web sites use to manage advertising. In the fourth quarter of 1998, the California company delivered 7.9 billion ads, compared to 3.2 billion in the third quarter, according to the prospectus. Large customers include Netscape, GeoCities (GCTY) and 24/7 Media (TFSM).

Those three clients, which accounted for 71 percent of the company's revenue in January, may decide to use alternate technology, the company warns. 24/7 Media's is already using to some extent its own ad targeting software in its network, while Netscape and GeoCities are being purchased by America Online and Yahoo, both of which use in-house technology.

"If our customers choose to use the proprietary ad serving technologies of the companies that acquire them or other ad serving technologies, our business, results of operations and financial condition would be materially and adversely affected," the company says in its IPO filing.

Indeed, this isn't just a boilerplate warning. 24/7 Media has stated in its most recent S-1 filing that it plans on moving its entire network of Web sites to its Adfinity technology, which it bought last year. When the switch is complete, the company will no longer use AdForce in its system, said Leslie Howard, vice president of corporate communications for 24/7 Media.

Netscape spokeswoman Patti Pierson declined to comment on any changes that could occur post-merger, while GeoCities and AdForce officials could not yet be reached for comment.

In 1998, AdForce generated sales of $4.3 million and a loss of $15 million, compared to year-ago sales of $320,000 and a loss of $5.7 million.

After announcing plans to spin-off its NetRadio in an IPO lst summer, Navarre (NAVR) finally took the most important step toward making that a reality. The company filed to raise as much as $37.4 million in an upcoming stock offering to be managed by Everen Securities.

The company operates a radio station Web site that plays music and news using streaming media technology as well as an e-commerce site that sells CDs. A feature called NetCompanion provides information about music being played and links the user to the commerce site. In 1998, NetRadio generated revenue of $255,000, of which about 20 percent came from CD sales.

Prior to the IPO, Navarre owned 77 percent of NetRadio, while cable station operator ValueVision (VVTV) owned 22 percent. See earlier story on NetRadio.

Written By Darren Chervitz, CBS MarketWatch

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