The sale of a new issue to a few large institutional investors without registering with the SEC. A private placement is exempt from SEC registration, subject to certain restrictions, because it is not offered to the general public. In order to make a private placement, the issuer must file a private placement memorandum (PPM), which explains exactly why the issue complies with SEC Regulation D exempting certain companies from registration; this is done to protect both the issuer and the investors. According to Regulation D, a PPM must contain a complete description of the security and the terms of the sale. It must also include applicable information about the issuer's financial situation and applicable risk factors. Private placement is also called direct placement.
The sale of a new security issue to a limited number of large buyers rather than to the general public. Direct placement generally involves less expense to the issuer, although the buyer may be able to negotiate a more favorable price.