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Twitter sets $17 to $20 per share range for IPO

NEW YORK — Twitter disclosed Thursday that it plans to price its eagerly awaited initial public offering at $17 to $20 a share, as it readies a road show for investors.

The company aims to sell 70 million shares. At the midpoint of the price range, the social network would raise nearly $1.3 billion. The offering would value Twitter on a fully diluted basis at more than $12 billion.

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That would make Twitter four times as big as AOL, but only a fraction of the size of Facebook, which has a market value of over $127 billion.

Company executives and their advisers will crisscross the country, presenting their case in a series of meetings starting Monday in Washington and Baltimore. A video presentation will be posted online shortly.

Twitter has also moved up the pricing of its offering by more than a week, to Nov. 6. That means the social network would then begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange, under the ticker symbol TWTR, the next day.

The IPO is expected to raise $1 billion to $1.5 billion. It will not be the biggest in terms of size — Plains GP Holdings, an energy company, raised $2.8 billion last week — but the Twitter deal is one of the most hotly anticipated offerings since Facebook‘s market debut last year.

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