The IPO Buzz: Early Curtain Call

But that doesn’t mean there isn’t anything on the IPO calendar.
Next week’s calendar has three “blank check” offerings. None has a pricing date.
Last week, two deals were priced and both hit the beaches running as each turned in a sterling aftermarket performance. They were Liquidity Services (Nasdaq: LQDT), an online auction marketplace, which popped for an opening-day gain of nearly 23 percent, and Pacific Airport Group (NYSE: PAC), a Mexico-based operator of airports, which popped for an opening-day gain of 34.6 percent.
None of the IPO professionals thought either deal would be dancing through the IPO vineyards. But that’s what makes the financial markets interesting.
Let’s take a look at this week’s traffic.
Staying Liquid, Flying High
Liquidity Services offered 7.69 million shares at $10 each. That was the mid-point of its $9 to $11 per share filing range. The IPO started trading on Thursday at $10.10 per share and closed its opening day at $12.29 per share. It closed Friday at $12.25, UP 22.5 percent from its initial offering price.
Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico, S.A. de C.V. (Pacific Airport Group) offered 41.5 million American Depositary Shares (ADS) at $21 each. That was above its original filing of 26.96 million ADS at $18 to $20 each. The IPO started trading on Friday, but the New York Stock Exchange did not post an opening price. Nevertheless, the IPO closed its opening day at $28.26 per share, UP 34.6 percent from its initial offering price.
That brings 2006’s IPO traffic to 35 IPOs, excluding three unit offerings consisting of common stock and warrants. That is slightly ahead of 2005’s pace, when 34 IPOs were priced, excluding five unit offerings, by late February.
If one remembers, March 2005 produced seven IPOs, excluding one unit offering. It wasn’t a very good month for IPOs and  the overall stock market.
The Nasdaq Composite Index closed on March 31, 2005, at 1,999.23, DOWN 8.1 percent from 2,175.44 on December 31, 2004.
It just goes to show you. The IPO market needs the wind of a strong stock market at its back.  
Staying on top of the IPO market

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