Hambrecht & Quist To Distribute IPO Shares Via Ameritrade

Investment bank Hambrecht & Quist (NYSE: HQ) announced today that it will distribute shares of its lead-managed initial public offerings and other equity offerings through online broker Ameritrade (Nasdaq: AMTD).

Ameritrade will join Charles Schwab (NYSE: SCH), which formed an alliance with Hambrecht & Quist in 1997, in distributing shares to online investors. Hambrecht & Quist expects to form partnerships with additional online brokerage partners.

“Many billions of dollars have been added to market capitalization in the United States in a relatively few short years, and providing meaningful access for individual investors to shares of these newly public companies is a major focus for H & Q,” said Hambrecht & Quist CEO Dan Case. “At the same time, companies who are investment banking clients of H & Q have the benefit of a new distribution channel that reaches individual investors with a strong interest in their company. We believe that the group represented in this initiative will become a valuable distribution channel for corporate issuers.”

In the past four quarters, Hambrecht & Quist has raised more than $12 billion (US$) in public financing and private placement transactions. The firm has lead-managed IPOs for such companies as Internet telephony company Net2Phone, Internet traffic management company F5 Networks, online gardening products retailer Garden.com, online music warehouse MP3.com ande-commerce infrastructure company Art Technology.

More IPO Shares Going To Individuals

The announcement comes at a time when more and more individual investors are getting the opportunity to invest in initial public offerings at the offering price.

Online investment banks such as E*Offering and Wit Capital are among the leaders in distributing shares of Internet offerings. Internet holding company CMGI has created an affinity program to give its shareholders the opportunity to invest in its IPOs.

Chase Will Buy H & Q

On September 28th, Chase Manhattan announced that it will acquire Hambrecht & Quist for $1.35 billion in cash. The transaction has been approved by the board of directors of both companies and is expected to be complete by the end of the year.

Over the past four quarters, Hambrecht & Quist, which is based in San Francisco, California, has advised on mergers and acquisitions worth more than $11 billion. The company currently has more than 950 employees.

In addition to its San Francisco headquarters, Hambrecht & Quist has offices in New York, Boston, and Atlanta, as well as California offices in Newport Beach and San Diego. The company also has an office in London and an affiliate relationship in Tel Aviv.

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