Baton Rouge-based Edgen Group Inc., which supplies steel pipe and other products to the energy industry, has launched an initial public offering of 15 million shares of Class A common stock.

Edgen expects the shares will be priced at between $14 and $16. Edgen has granted its underwriters an option to purchase up to 2.3 million additional shares of common stock if more than 15 million shares are sold.

At $16 per share, the stock sale could generate $276 million. At $14, the stock sale could generate $241.2 million.

The company expects to use the net proceeds of the stock sale to repay debt and for general corporate purposes. In late December, Edgen notified the Securities and Exchange Commission that the company intended to file the IPO.

Edgen shares will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “EDG.”

Jefferies & Company, Inc., Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC and Citigroup Global Markets Inc. are serving as joint book-running managers for the offering.

Edgen is a global distributor of specialty products to the energy sector. The products include steel pipe, valves, heavy plate, and related components.

The company estimates its first quarter earnings, if the company were publicly traded, were between $3.5 million and $4.5 million. Edgen’s sales were between $496 million and $514 million.

Edgen’s 2011 earnings were $2.1 million, or 1 cent per share, on sales of $1.7 billion. In 2010, the company lost $89.3 million, or $2.19 per share, on sales of $1.3 billion.