Betfair flotation values firm at £1.4bn

Betfair website Betfair says it is the world's largest online sports betting provider

Online sports betting business Betfair has priced its share flotation on the London stock market, in move which values the total company at £1.4bn ($2.2bn).

The sale of 15.2% of the company took place at a price of £13 per share.

The 16.2 million shares in the gambling firm were sold towards the top of the £11-£14 planned range.

Betfair was founded 10 years ago, and says it is the world's largest business of its kind.

The shares rose to £15.60 in early conditional trading, up 20% from the initial public offering price.

The existing shareholders have the option to allot an additional 1.5% of the company to meet surplus demand from the offering.

Betfair has three million customers and pioneered person-to-person betting, where punters bet against each other rather than the bookmaker on a range of sports.

The company was founded by Andrew Black, a former professional gambler, and Edward Wray, a former JP Morgan trader.

The site also offers poker and other traditional casino betting forums.

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