Posts tagged 'IPO'

RIP public markets: The steroid era for start-ups is over

Once upon a time, going public was the pinnacle of achievement for a tech entrepreneur.

This is no longer the case. Tech IPOs have taken a major hit and startups are staying private for longer.

The US IPO market in general is experiencing the slowest year since the financial crisis, but it has been a particularly quiet year for tech IPOs, with only a few companies going public in the US. Read more

We need to talk about Metro Bank’s weird balance sheet

It’s not quite the coming out party typically associated with a stock market listing.

Metro Bank’s grand arrival onto the London Stock Exchange will be an unusual operation, with the bank raising money privately from existing backers instead of going out to persuade new investors for money. After the funding round, the bank will try to float through an ‘introduction’, otherwise known as getting your shares stuck up on the board without having a sale*. Read more

Ooma, oops!

Not all US tech IPOs head directly to the moon…

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So, Jamie Dimon came to Europe

Fine… he runs JPMorgan Chase, it’s a big bank. What’s so interesting about him getting on a plane?

He went to Amsterdam and hosted a dinner at the fancy Museum van Loon (pictured right) and a group of Dutch executives got invites.

Potential clients had a good dinner, what’s wrong with that?

It took place on June 30 and the chairman of the NL Financial Investments, the independent body that manages the Dutch government’s stakes in companies, including ABN AMRO, attended. His name is Michael Enthoven. Read more

The unfrothing of Alibaba

There’s a parallel reality thing going on with Alibaba, the sprawling Chinese e-commerce conglomerate.

On the one hand it’s deals, deals, deals. Here it is reportedly pouring $1bn into an Indian online retailer, Snapdeal, so said company can continue waging a price discounting battle with India’s biggest online retailer, Flipkart. Here it is forging a trade finance partnership with an entity called ezbob, which was formerly the business finance arm of pay-day lender Wonga.

And here’s the company’s market performance since September’s frenzied, record-setting IPO: Read more

Carried out

That’s JP Morgan Cazenove repeating its 290p target on Just Eat, a fast food delivery website it co-floated in April for 260p apiece.

Wait … what’s that about a correction? Read more

A bank in need…

Is it because Deutsche Bank’s staff really didn’t want to offend any future employers? Selling a €6.3bn rights issue is not easy, but a group of 25 underwriters does suggest a certain lack of discernment.

Although that is fewer than four years ago, when Deutsche hired 32 of the 35 banks interested. (Who were the lonely three, we wonder?) According to the International Financing Review, those that did not deliver have missed out this time in the industry game of reciprocity. Read more

The sixth most visited online fashion website in the UK

Welcome, latest disrupter of retail to enter the public markets in the burst of New Year investor enthusiasm.

Which begs the question: what will the world pay for the chance to profit from the fashion choices of 16 to 24 year olds?

Spoiler: a lot, as it turns out. Read more


How exactly do you sell a fridge retailer at ~100 times EBITDA? Click below to find out.

Changes to search engines’ algorithms or terms of services could cause the Group’s websites to be excluded from or ranked lower in natural search results. If the Group is unable to recognise and adapt quickly to such changes, the Group could suffer a significant decrease in traffic to its websites and, in turn, conversion rates and revenue.

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AO here we go, either a little too high or a little too low

The UK online white goods retail sensation,, is the latest hot stock market floatation. Early trading puts its valuation in the region of £1.6bn, so we thought we better try and work out what exactly it does. After all, no one would pay six times sales for a washing machine shop, would they?

From the about us section:

We operate a sleek and well-refined process via our three strands. With over 4.5 million customers, we live and breathe excellence from the very first phone call, to the moment we power up a customer’s brand new appliance in their own home.

Not delivering your brand new appliance to someone else’s home is a start, we guess. But about those strands, the notice of intention to float provides a bit more clarity:

In 2012, AO had a 24 per cent share of the online market for major domestic appliances in the United Kingdom, of which 19 per cent represented AO website sales, and 5 per cent represented third-party branded website sales according to the OC&C Report.

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KKR My Best Friend Cayman Topco Limited

Pets at Home is the latest addition to the pipeline of high-quality initial public offerings set to greet the Great British investing public, according to the FT:

It plans to raise £275m from the offering, which it will use to pay down debt. It will also use £325m from new banking facilities to cut debt. The group plans to have net borrowings of £275m when it comes to market.

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Can we have our bags back?

Here’s the Ocado mission statement:

To revolutionise the way people shop forever, by giving them a uniquely innovative and greener alternative to traditional grocery shopping.

At the 13-year mark, the revolution has not yet found room for profits, however.

With a torrent of new stock on the way this year attached to the latest round of hot initial public offerings (DFS, Zalando, Game, B&M Bargains…) with ebullient forecasts, it might be helpful to go back over Ocado’s history, and compare and contrast the hope with reality. Read more

A leaf through the Foxtons prospectus

Here’s the doc. Click to read.

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Jobs for twits, by twits

We are sure this is exactly what the wise legislators of the US had in mind when they passed the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act last year.

A small internet start-up gets to raise a little bit of capital from private investors without all that cumbersome regulation and public scrutiny so it can invest and hire people. You know, JOBS! Read more

Compliant Twits, or…


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A Ruckus ruckus

The US initial public offering of a little wireless kit maker on Friday confirmed what everyone already knew: the IPO market is dead – or at least deadly dangerous.

Everyone knew this, except the lead underwriters of Ruckus Wireless — Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Deutsche bank. Read more

Ship of Theseus seeks flotation

Those who argue for a further relaxation of the LSE’s listing rules may want to note the following announcement:

Rangers, the Scottish football club, today announces its intention to seek Admission to the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange. Read more

It’s gotta close greenshoe!

Update after the close: It closed green(shoe) at $38.23 according to Bloomberg data. But not until after a few moments close to $38.00, as seen below earlier…

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Calstrs takes aim at Facebook board

The California State Teachers’ Retirement System, Calstrs, has called for Facebook to split the role of chairman and chief executive and to appoint a woman to its all-male board for the first time, the FT reports. Calstrs, one of the biggest US public pension funds, is already invested in Facebook through its private equity holdings, and will pick up shares through index-tracking after its IPO. Calstrs’ demand for shareholders to be given voting powers according to the size of their stake will be a tough request to meet, however. Facebook has revealing in filings that Mark Zuckerberg paid nominal sums to other shareholders in agreements to gain enormous voting clout, says NYT Dealbook.

Caesars IPO prices casino chain at $1.13bn

Caesars Entertainment, the casino chain carrying more than $22bn in debt, completed an initial public offering that gives the company a market value of $1.13bn, Bloomberg reports. Las Vegas-based Caesars, taken private in a $30.7bn buyout by Apollo Global Management and TPG Capital in 2008, raised $16.3m selling 1.81m shares at $9 each, the company said in a statement. The stock, which was offered for $8 to $10 apiece, will start trading on the Nasdaq Stock Market on Wednesday under the symbol CZR. The $16.3m raised is a fraction of what it was hoping to muster two years ago. Reuters says the deal is often referred to as an example of how the credit bubble that preceded the financial crisis of 2008 led to overleveraged deals that have left their private equity investors with a Herculean challenge of getting their money back. Caesars’ earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) were $1.8bn in the 12 months ending September 30 on interest expenses of $1.93bn, according to its IPO document.


Second thoughts on Facebook valuation

Facebook already has so much cash, and so little desire for true shareholder control, that it should really call its IPO off instead of “gratifying” its venture capital backers and employees, the FT’s John Gapper writes in a must-read column. Investors have reacted warily to Facebook’s suggested $75bn-$100bn valuation of 100 times price to earnings, says Reuters. Google emerged on public markets in 2005 with a price 218 times its earnings, but was valued at $23bn at the time. Facebook’s price tag would make it worth 53 per cent of Google’s current valuation, despite the latter company earning 10 times the profit, notes the WSJ.

Facebook serves notice on $5bn IPO

Facebook launched the process for its highly anticipated stock market debut, filing papers for a $5bn initial public offering that will turn key shareholders into billionaires, most notably Mark Zuckerberg, the 27-year-old chief executive and co-founder, the FT reports. Mr Zuckerberg’s 28.4 per cent stake would give him a paper worth of $22.7bn, based on secondary market trading, valuing Facebook at $80bn. More striking is the absolute control Mr Zuckerberg will retain over the company. He and his close allies own 57 per cent of the company, guaranteeing that he will be able to run Facebook more like the mission-driven public trust he envisioned in his Harvard dorm room eight years ago than a public company beholden to investors. “Facebook exists to make the world more open and connected, and not just to build a company,” he wrote in a letter to investors in the filing. “Simply put: we don’t build services to make money; we make money to build better services.”

The ‘quiet’ CFO behind Facebook’s IPO filing

Facebook’s filing on Wednesday is set to price its initial public offering at some $5bn, but could be increased in response to investor demand, IFR reports. Guiding the IPO will be David Ebersman, Facebook’s quiet but no-nonsense chief financial officer, says AllThingsD. “Facebook is not taking chances with this IPO and wants to make it a blue-chip event,” one source told AllThingsD. Ebersman has pushed to keep banks’ fees in the offering low.

The LSE’s call to action

Sadly, the London Stock Exchange’s plan to fix the broken UK IPO market is unlikely to work for the simple reason that it doesn’t really believe there’s a problem. Read more

What goes up, must come down

SuperDroop has closed below its 500p IPO price target for the first time on Tuesday, as the market continues to digest the recent sell note from Numis Securities.

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Yelp aims for $2bn IPO

Yelp, the online consumer review company, plans to launch an initial public offering worth up to $2bn, according the Wall Street Journal, citing sources close to the company. Hot on the heels of the successful IPO of deals site Groupon last week, Yelp has mandated Goldman Sachs and Citigroup to lead the offer as early as next year. The mid-August volatility closed the market for new IPOs but Groupon’s deal last week might have blazed the trail for further deals launched by internet companies. Established in 2004, Yelp was one of the “first companies to blend three areas that are driving much of the growth among consumer Internet firms: social networking, local commerce and mobile communications,” the WSJ said.

Groupon halves IPO valuation

Groupon will seek a valuation of no more than $12bn for its initial public offering, half the amount it originally wanted when the offering was first announced, the FT reports. The size of the float in the IPO has also been cut to roughly $500m from $750m, leaving less than 10 per cent of the company’s outstanding shares available to IPO investors, Reuters says. Groupon and its advisers have reduced the float partly to sell more stock later on at a higher price, and partly because current investors are now reluctant to sell their shares into the offering, according to the WSJ. The reduced offering follows a barrage of weak stock markets and concerns over the online coupon company’s business model, NYT Dealbook says.

The curse of the UK IPO strikes again

Barely six weeks after chief executive Jim French confirmed guidance and described forward tickets sales as encouraging, Flybe, the regional UK airline, has issued another profits warning.

Flybe’s press releaseRead more

IPO market still out for the summer

Pricewaterhouse Coopers and Renaissance Capital (in the usual place) do their best to add gloss to their third quarter overviews of the IPO market, but not enough to brighten a depressingly dark picture.

Start with Rencap, which tackles activity worldwide. The report starts out gloomy enough, noting that the third quarter was the quietest since Q3 2009 in issuance volume — and that’s with 87 per cent of the issuance coming in the first six weeks, before the August volatility spike. Read more

Facebook postpones IPO

Facebook will debut on public markets later than planned, delaying offering plans from to late 2012 , people familiar with the company have told the FT. Facebook’s chief executive Mark Zuckerberg will wait until next September or later in order to remain focused upon developing products, the people said. The delay is reminiscent of Google’s long journey to IPO in 2004, FT Tech Hub says, and it is Google that is Facebook’s immediate challenge over the next two years, as the companies vie over products. Meanwhile, Groupon is planning to go public in October or November, having also delayed plans this year, NYT Dealbook reports.