The IPO Buzz: Reading for Meaning

One of the key words of advice to an IPO investor is: Read the prospectus. The most important thing is to zero in on the “Risk Factors.” They can grind on for pages and, you the investor, should be aware of them all. In some cases, the risk factors could make the reader’s hair stand on end.

Another piece of advice is not in the reader’s guidebook. It is to compare the final pricing terms of an IPO, which are listed on the cover of the final prospectus, with the pricing terms on the cover of the preliminary prospectus. Note the offering terms such as the number of shares and the price per share on the cover of the final prospectus, and in some cases – both. It could give you an indication of the aftermarket price reaction.

Last week’s IPO market sent a strong message. Seven of the nine IPOs priced last week were priced above range – and all seven of those popped in the aftermarket. (See the “Pricings” section of These seven IPOs had an average opening-day gain of 29.1 percent. For the other two IPOs priced last week, the reading was not all that riveting. One deal was priced within its filing range and posted a gain of 1.1 percent. The final IPO priced last week was priced below range and lost 23.3 percent.

This brings us to this week, when bankers expect to price 11 IPOs and raise $3.38 billion. The IPO professionals say some are worth watching.

Let’s take a look at this week’s IPO Calendar of 11 deals, organized by pricing and trading dates listed below.

Tuesday evening for Wednesday morning

Aquestive Therapeutics (AQST proposed), based in Warren, New Jersey, is a specialty pharmaceutical company developing differentiated products to address unmet medical needs. It has a late-stage proprietary product pipeline focused on the treatment of diseases of the central nervous system. Note: Insiders have indications of interest to buy $20 million, or 33.3 percent, of the $60 million IPO.

Bloom Energy (BE proposed), based in Sunnyvale, California, provides an on-site electric power solution using its proprietary solid oxide fuel cell technology that is redefining and transforming how power is generated and delivered. Note: Insiders have indications of interest to buy $50 million, or 20 percent, of the $250 million offering.

(For more information about these companies and others on the IPO calendar, please check the profiles found on’s website.)

Wednesday evening for Thursday morning

Aurora Mobile (JG proposed), based in Guangdong, China, offers a leading mobile big data solutions platform. The company serves about 864 million monthly active unique mobile devices in China, which it says accounts for about 90 percent of the mobile device coverage in the country. Note: Insiders have indications of interest to buy $35 million, or 30.7 percent, of the $114 million IPO.

Berry Petroleum (BRY proposed), based in Dallas, is an independent upstream energy company engaged primarily in the development and production of conventional oil reserves located in the Western United States. Note: The company is offering about 12.2 million shares and selling shareholders are offering about 6.6 million shares.

Cango (CANG proposed), based in Shanghai, provides an automotive transaction service platform connecting dealers, financial institutions, car buyers and other industry participants in China.

Focus Financial Partners (FOCS proposed), based in New York City, is a leading partnership of over 50 independent fiduciary wealth management firms operating in the highly fragmented registered investment advisors, or RIA, industry.

Liquidia Technologies (LQDA proposed), based in Morrisville, North Carolina, is a late-stage clinical biopharmaceutical company focusing on the development and commercialization of human therapeutics using its proprietary PRINT® technology to transform the lives of patients. Note: Insiders have indications of interest to buy $30 million, or 60 percent, of the $50 million IPO.

Pinduoduo (PDD proposed), based in Shanghai, operates a “new e-commerce” platform providing buyers with value-for-money merchandise and fun and interactive shopping experiences. The company’s Pinduoduo mobile platform offers a selection of attractively priced merchandise, featuring a dynamic social shopping experience that leverages social networks as an effective and efficient tool for buyer acquisition and engagement. Note: Insiders have indications of interest to buy $500 million, or 33.3 percent, of the $1.5 billion IPO.

Tenable Holdings (TENB proposed), based in Columbia, Maryland, claims to be the first and only provider of solutions for a new category of cybersecurity called Cyber Exposure. Cyber Exposure is a discipline for managing and measuring cybersecurity risk in the digital era. Note: Insiders have indications of interest to buy $1.2 million of the $165.6 million IPO.

Thursday evening for Friday morning

Endava (DAVA proposed), based in London, is a next-generation technology services provider that says it helps “accelerate disruption by delivering rapid evolution to enterprises.” The company helps its clients find new ways to interact with their customers and users. Note: Endava is offering 2.89 million shares and selling shareholders are offering about 2.71 million shares

Opera Limited (OPRA proposed), based in Oslo, Norway, is a browser provider and an influential player in the field of AI-driven digital content discovery and recommendation platforms. Note: In a private placement, Bitmain, IDG Capital Fund and IDG Capital Investors will buy 9,090,909 ordinary shares, 1,732,545 ordinary shares and 85,636 ordinary shares from Opera, respectively.

July’s Final Days

This brings us to the week of July 30ththe last two days of July and the first few days of August. There is just one small-cap deal on the calendar next week. But anything can happen when the U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s filing window opens for business again on Monday morning, July 23rd.

Stay tuned.

Disclosure: Neither the author nor anyone else on the staff has a position in any stocks mentioned, nor do we trade or invest in IPOs. The author and staff do not issue advice, recommendations or opinion.