* Shares up 10 cents at $20.10
* Pebblebrook sold 17.5 mln shares, raised $350 mln
* Pebblebrook trading on NYSE under PEB
NEW YORK - Shares of Pebblebrook Hotel Trust held steady in their debut on the New York Stock Exchange, trading up only 10 cents from Tuesday's initial public offering price of $20.
The Maryland-based real estate investment trust (REIT) on Tuesday raised about $350 million after matching pricing expectations, but analysts cautioned that the hotel industry is still being buffeted by the financial crisis.
On Tuesday another REIT, Chesapeake Lodging Trust, postponed indefinitely its initial public offering, an underwriter said, citing market conditions. Chesapeake was hoping to raise roughly $250 million.
Another hotel REIT, Massachusetts-based Pyramid Hotels & Resorts Inc filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for a $275 million IPO earlier this week.
Analysts say low property prices and a steadying stock market are attractive but warn that high-end hotels have been hurt by a sharp fall-off in business travel, and have cut rates to attract guests, leaving owners with high levels of debt.
The Dow Jones U.S. Hotels index has shot up more than 60 percent this year on signs of an economic recovery, but its pace of growth has slowed and the outlook from industry bellwethers Marriott International Inc (MAR.N) and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc (HOT.N), is weak.
It's not good enough to buy the property at less than the replacement cost. It has to be purchased on the economic model that is working right now, said IPOdesktop.com President Francis Gaskins.
But overall, Gaskins was optimisitc. He said he thought Pebblebrook's management was capable of finding a good deal and making it financially viable.
Pebblebrook does not have an operating history, but instead is leaning on the experience of management. Chief Executive Officer Jon Bortz founded LaSalle Hotel Properties (LHO.N), which is now the third-largest REIT by market capitalization on the Dow Jones U.S. Hotels index, and served as its chairman and CEO.
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Raymond Martz has previous experience as a CFO, and served in two senior finance positions in two New York Stock Exchange-listed hotel REITs.
Pebblebrook, which was formed in October 2009, does not currently own any properties, but plans to buy hotels in major U.S. cities and in major coastal markets.
After the offering and concurrent private placement the company will have roughly $330 million and no debt, according to the filing.
The IPOs underwriters, led by Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAC.N), Raymond James (RJF.N), and Wells Fargo Securities (WFC.N), have the option to buy an additional 2.625 million shares. (Reporting by Clare Baldwin, editing by Gerald E. McCormick, Dave Zimmerman)