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Nov. 4 (Reuters) – Shares of NerdWallet Inc (NRDS.O) rose nearly 31% when they debuted on the stock market, valuing the company at around $ 1.5 billion, as the company joined a group of companies that have gone public to take advantage of the large investor appetite for tech stocks.

Shares of San Francisco, Calif.-Based NerdWallet opened at $ 23.5. It sold 7.25 million shares at $ 18 apiece, the midpoint of the price range announced earlier, raising $ 130.5 million.

NerdWallet, co-founded in 2009 by former hedge fund executive Tim Chen and former JP Morgan trader Jake Gibson, provides financial advice to users on credit cards, loans, mortgages and other financial products.

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Chen was inspired to start a business that made everyday financial decisions easier, when he couldn’t find an answer on the internet to his sister’s question about the most suitable credit card for an expat living in Australia.

A slew of fintech companies have made their debut in the market this year, including buy-it-now and later-payout firm Affirm Holdings Inc (AFRM.O), online brokerage Robinhood Markets Inc (HOOD.O) and the Coinbase Global Inc (COIN .O) cryptocurrency exchange.

Morgan Stanley, BofA Securities, KeyBanc Capital Markets, Barclays and Citigroup are among the bookrunners associated with the NerdWallet offer.

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Report by Manya Saini in Bangalore; Editing by Shailesh Kuber

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