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Even if no shares are offered to John Q., it is worth thinking about by analogy to what happened with MasterCard.

Mastercard's IPO was a big "meh". The stock didn't do too well at first, however, in the past year or so it seems to be going better and the stock price has I think doubled or more than that in the past year or so.

So even if one can't get in on the IPO, the idea would be to see what happens and perhaps buy into it afterwards. I'm not sure that buying on the day of the IPO is such a good idea for Joe Retail anyway, because oftentimes institutions and insiders see the IPO as a way to dump shares and cash in quickly.

I thought this would be a great topic for discussion and possible investment, in addition to the analogy with what happened in Mastercard, because this potentially has characteristics of 1) a Peter Lynch like investment (well known brand that everyone uses); 2) a possible Warren Buffett style investment (franchise, possible moat, possible high return on equity, possible high return on invested capital).

This will be a $10 billion IPO which apparently is pretty large for an IPO. You do have to wonder somewhat why they're choosing right now to dilute ownership. Maybe something to do with the credit market turmoil. Maybe now financing operations through equity is cheaper than doing so by taking on debt/more debt.

Of course I have no familiarity with the nuts and bolts of Visa's financials and possibly no one really does as it's privately held. However, I was hoping that someone might be able to compare Visa with perhaps some other consumer lending operation/bank/card issuer. Possibly Amex?
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