The IPO Buzz: Harvesting the IPO Clouds

Brightcove (BCOV) was last week’s screamer.
The company priced its IPO of 5 million shares at $11 each on Thursday evening. It opened on Friday, Feb. 17, at $14.50 and sold as high as $15.76 before closing at $14.30 – UP 30 percent from its initial offering price.
Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Brightcove is a provider of cloud-based solutions for publishing and distributing professional digital media.
Bazaarvoice is this week’s IPO connected with cloud computing.
The company plans to price 9.5 million shares at $8 to $10 each on Thursday evening, Feb. 23. The IPO is expected to start trading on Friday morning on the NASDAQ Global Market under the proposed symbol “BV.” The joint-lead managers are Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank Securities and Credit Suisse. The co-managers are Piper Jaffray, Pacific Crest Securities and BMO Capital Markets.
Bazaarvoice offers e-commerce software allowing customers to rate products and post their reviews on the retailer’s Website. The company services about 737 clients in the retail, consumer products, travel and leisure, technology, telecommunications, financial services, healthcare and automotive industries. Its technology infrastructure includes data center, cloud computing (the magic word), network management, a secure centralized source control management system and proprietary data analytics.
Based in Austin, Texas, the company was formed in 2005. It has about 608 employees.
Bazaarvoice will offer 9 million shares and selling shareholders plan to offer 480,000 shares. The company expects to have about 56.9 million shares outstanding after the offering.
Rounding out this week’s calendar: There is a carryover from last week called Ceres (CERE – proposed), ROI Acquisition (ROIQU – proposed), a “blank check” company, and the other offering is Proto Labs (PRLB – proposed), an online industrial manufacturer creating custom parts in quick turnarounds for prototype and short-run production.
Facebook Frenzy
What has infected the media – and “the wannabe media” – is a fixation on Facebook.
It’s Facebook here, Facebook there, everywhere a Facebook story. Swarms of publications running from the majors to the self-published have something to say. But most read like a rehash of what has already been printed.
The fact of the matter is there is nothing new to report.
On Feb. 1, 2012, Facebook filed its initial prospectus. As of press time, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) shows no updated prospectus having been filed. If history is any example of others IPOs, there’ll be a couple of more amendments filed before the company reveals the number of shares to be offered, the price range and the pricing date.
That’s when the media will go berserk. The bottom line: Read one of the stories, you’ll have read them all.
Stealth Market
Floating in the background, almost unnoticed, are the cloud computing companies. Seven weeks into the year, their IPOs have been the darlings of 2012’s IPO market so far. They are:
  • Guidewire Software (GWRE) priced its IPO of 8.9 million shares at $13 each on Jan. 24, and it closed at $22.06 on Friday, Feb. 17 – UP 70.1 percent from its initial offering price. That’s the best IPO aftermarket performance of the year.
  • Greenway Medical Technologies (GWAY) priced its IPO of 6.7 million shares at $10 each on Feb. 1, and it closed at $14.77 on Friday – UP 47.7 percent from its initial offering price. This is the year’s second-best IPO aftermarket performance.
  • Brightcove’s opening-day gain of 30 percent ranked it the fifth best.
Collectively, the three were up 50.3 percent from their initial offering prices.
That’s better than the overall IPO market.
Seventeen deals have been priced year-to-date, according to the SEC filings, and (including the cloud IPOs) their average gain as of Friday’s close was 15.7 percent.
The Nasdaq Composite Index, the barometer of the IPO market, was up 13.3 percent for the year as of the close on Friday, Feb. 17.
And here comes another cloud-computer IPO on this week’s calendar.
Stay tuned.
Disclosure: Neither the author nor anyone else on the staff has a position in any stocks mentioned, nor do they trade or invest in IPOs. The author and staff do not issue advice, recommendations or opinions