Hilton Makes Triumphant Return to the NYSE

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Hilton Hotel, Lima, Peru

Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. (NYSE:HLT), the world’s largest hotel chain, returned to the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday in the second-biggest IPO of the year. Shares finished up 7.5 percent to $21.50 on Thursday afternoon after pricing at $20.

Hilton was taken private by Blackstone Group (NYSE:BX) in 2007. Now the hotel chain that’s associated with some iconic locations and some famous heiresses is public again after Blackstone raised $2.35 billion by selling 117.6 million shares at $20 each in advance of the IPO. The Associated Press said that Blackstone will remain the majority voting power and won’t be selling any of its shares in the company.

According to the Associated Press, Hilton’s return to the NYSE is the biggest hotel IPO ever. Forbes pointed out that though Twitter’s (NYSE:TWTR) IPO was probably the most talked-about of 2013, Twitter only raised $1.82 billion. Hilton’s return as a publicly traded company bumped Twitter down to the fourth-largest IPO of the year. The hotelier was founded in 1919 by Conrad Hilton. The chain now operates 4,000 hotels with 670,000 rooms across 90 countries and several different brands, Reuters reports. Luxury hotel names under Hilton’s umbrella include Conrad and Waldorf Astoria.

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