Big year ahead for blogs, IPOs – Elias Glenn

From The Standard:

With valuations of Chinese Internet companies rising over the course of 2005, several firms are looking to take advantage of the market with overseas initial public offerings in 2006. However, one of the hottest companies in the industry in 2005, blog service provider Bokee, appears to be going through some growing pains.

Many employees at Bokee may have a less than merry Christmas this year, as the company reportedly laid off more than 100 employees this week. Bokee has said the company is undergoing strategic reorganization, but it has not directly confirmed the number of layoffs.

The move comes as a surprise, as Bokee is reportedly preparing for a Nasdaq IPO. Chief executive has said the company will list within the next two years, though many sources say Bokee will push to list in 2006 while valuations of Chinese tech companies remain high. Reports said this week’s layoffs are meant to improve the company’s financial status before its planned IPO.

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