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Not only did La Quinta file its draft IPO registration statement confidentially with the SEC, the limited service chain issued a press release about it after market hours, a day before Christmas Eve. After the success of the Extended Stay America and Hilton IPOs, Blackstone wants another Christmas present, although Santa wouldn't be arriving this time with another IPO gift until well into 2014.

Fresh off its $565 million IPO of Extended Stay America in November and the record $2.35 billion Hilton IPO earlier this month, Blackstone signaled its intent to take its La Quinta Holdings unit public as the limited service chain confidentially submitted a draft IPO registration statement to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

La Quinta stated that the “initial public offering is expected to commence after the SEC completes its review process, subject to market and other conditions.”

The hotel chain said it hasn’t yet determined the number of shares of common stock that it would sell, and hasn’t determined the price range.

The documents were filed confidentially so there are no public disclosures of La Quinta’s financials yet.

Filing IPO statements confidentially is not the norm, although it is permissible under the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act,  which became law in 2012 and permits emerging businesses under certain circumstances to file their registration statements privately and to negotiate with the SEC behind the scenes. The documents eventually become public.

Twitter, for example, filed its registration statement confidentially.

La Quinta is hardly a startup, but its revenue numbers may enable it to meet the JOBS Act threshold. Blackstone acquired La Quinta in 2006 for $2.3 billion plus debt.

In October, published reports indicated that Blackstone was shopping La Quinta around, and had even engaged in a second round of bidding with possible suitors including Choice Hotels and other private equity firms.

Perhaps Blackstone’s success with Hilton and Extended Stay America made an IPO for La Quinta especially attractive.

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Tags: blackstone, ipo, la quinta

Photo credit: La Quinta confidentially filed a draft registration statement for an IPO with the Securities and Exchange Commission right before Christmas. La Quinta

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