BTB Auction Site Soars in IPO

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Wall Street demonstrated its approval of the online business-to-business auction as a commerce model for the future on Friday by quintupling the stock of FreeMarkets Inc. in its initial public offering. The Pittsburgh company listed an initial price of $48 for the 3.6 million share offer, which soared 483 percent to close at $280 a share.


FreeMarkets creates customized business-to-business online auctions for buyers of industrial parts, raw materials and commodities. Product categories include injection-molded plastic parts, commercial machine parts, metal fabrications, chemicals, printed circuit boards, corrugated packaging and coal. More than 2,000 suppliers from over 30 countries have participated in the company's online auctions.

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