Houghton Mifflin Seeks Up to $292 Million in Book Publisher IPO

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Co., the educational book publisher backed by hedge-fund manager John Paulson, is planning an initial public offering that may raise as much as $292 million.

The company’s selling stockholders, including Paulson & Co., Avenue Capital Group and Blackrock Inc. (BLK), are offering 18.3 million shares for $14 to $16 apiece, according to a regulatory filing today. The existing shareholders will receive all the proceeds from the offering.

Houghton Mifflin emerged from bankruptcy in June of last year, issuing all of its outstanding common stock to the lenders in exchange for canceling its secured debt. These shareholders are offering a 13 percent stake in publisher. At the high end of the marketed range, Houghton Mifflin would be valued at about $2.24 billion, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Houghton Mifflin, based in Boston, has been publishing since 1832 and obtained 88 percent of revenue from its educational segment last year, mostly in the U.S. Other sales come from its trade segment, which is driven by bestselling titles such as “The Hobbit” and “Life of Pi.”

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley are managing the Houghton Mifflin IPO. The company applied to list its shares on the Nasdaq Stock Market under the symbol HMHC.

To contact the reporter on this story: Leslie Picker in New York at lpicker2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jeffrey McCracken at jmccracken3@bloomberg.net

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