The IPO Buzz: Vertex, Vital Farms and More

This week’s IPO Calendar is brought to you by the letter “V.” Vertex and Vital Farms lead the parade of seven companies planning to go public during the last week of July. Bankers expect to raise about $2.1 billion, if all seven deals get done.

It’s quite possible that the IPO Calendar will add more names when the SEC’s filing window opens again for business on Monday morning, July 27th. Case in point: A week ago, the IPO Calendar had seven deals on it at press time on Sunday night. Come Monday morning, several more names jumped onto the IPO launch pad and the IPO Calendar nearly doubled. As it turned out, one IPO was postponed.

Twelve IPOs got priced last week. Seven were traditional IPOs and five were SPACs. Of the seven traditional  IPOs that got done, the best performers were Jamf Holding (JAMF), up 52.69 percent from its IPO price at Friday’s close, and Montrose Environmental Group (MEG), up 49.27 percent from its IPO price at Friday’s close.

The biggest buzz was created by Pershing Square Tontine Holdings Ltd. (PSTH.U), the $4 billion SPAC backed by hedge fund billionaire Bill Ackman and his Pershing Square Capital Management. The deal made history as the biggest SPAC IPO in history – and the first to be priced at $20 per unit, twice the going rate for the typical IPO by a SPAC (special-purpose acquisition company) or blank-check company. Ackman appeared on CNBC in an interview on Wednesday morning, July 22nd, ahead of the IPO’s debut on the New York Stock Exchange, and said, “We are long-term bullish on America.”

As MarketWatch reported, Pershing Square Tontine opened at $21.10 on the NYSE and hit an intraday high near $22 before closing at $21.30, up 6.5 percent- again defying the norms for SPAC IPOs, which usually trade near or at their IPO prices.  Ackman told Yahoo! Finance later on Wednesday that Pershing Square Tontine is its “own version of a unicorn,” noting: “So we’re looking to marry a unicorn. So we’re prettying ourselves up for the most attractive possible partner.” (A unicorn is a privately held company with a market valuation of at least $1 billion or more.)

The pace looked like rush hour at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s filing window last week, with 13 new filings (S-1 filings) and 14 updated filings (S-1/A filings).

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) hit a milestone last week, closing above 27,000 for the first time on Wednesday, July 22nd. But by Friday’s close, stocks had pulled back with the three major U.S. stock indexes ending the week lower amid a drop in some tech bellwethers and rising tension between the United States and China, according to The Wall Street Journal.

July’s Last Hurrah

Now let’s look at the seven companies set to go public during the last week of July. The IPOs are organized by pricing and trading dates – with one to debut on Wednesday, two on Thursday, and four on Friday.

Tuesday night pricing for Wednesday trading

Vertex  (VERX proposed), based in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, delivers comprehensive tax solutions for global businesses. The company says it has more than 4,000 customers, including over half of the Fortune 500, and provides its customers with tax support in over 130 countries.

This is an IPO of 21.2 million shares at $14 to $16 each to trade on the NASDAQ.

Wednesday night pricing for Thursday trading

ACE Convergence Acquisition (ACEV.U proposed), based in Wilmington, Delaware, is a blank-check company or a special-purpose acquisition company (SPAC) that intends to focus its search for a target business in the IT infrastructure software and semiconductor sector.

This is an IPO of 20.0 million units at $10 each to trade on the NASDAQ.

AlloVir (ALVR proposed), based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is a leading late clinical-stage cell therapy company developing highly innovative allogeneic T cell therapies to treat and prevent devastating viral diseases.

This is an IPO of 14.8 million shares at $16 to $18 each to trade on the NASDAQ.

Thursday night pricing for Friday trading

1847 Goedeker (GOED proposed), based in the St. Louis suburb of Ballwin, Missouri, is a one-stop e-commerce destination for home furnishings, including appliances, furniture, home goods and related products.

This is a small-cap IPO of 1 million shares at $9 to $11 each to trade on the NYSE – American.

Li Auto (LI proposed), based in Beijing, makes electric vehicles for families. Its first model, Li ONE, is a six-seat premium electric SUV with a range extension system and cutting-edge smart vehicle solutions, the prospectus says.

This is an IPO of 95 million American Depositary Shares (ADS) at $8 to $10 each to trade on the NASDAQ.

Vasta Platform (VSTA proposed), based in Sao Paulo, Brazil, describes itself as a leading high-growth education company in Brazil powered by technology, providing educational and digital solutions to private schools in the K-12 educational segment.

This is an IPO of 18.6 million shares at $15.50 to $17.50 each to trade on the NASDAQ.

Vital Farms (VITL proposed), based in Austin, Texas, is an ethical food company that has become the leading U.S. brand of pasture-raised eggs and butter and the second-largest U.S. egg brand by retail dollar sales. Its pasture-raised products (shell eggs, butter, hard-boiled eggs, ghee and liquid whole eggs) are sold in about 13,000 stores nationwide.

This is an IPO of 7.8 million shares at $15 to $17 each to trade on the NASDAQ.

(For more information about these companies, check the IPO profiles on the website.)

Week of Aug. 3rd

The IPO Calendar is blank for the first week of August. But that could change quickly when the SEC’s filing window opens again for business on Monday, July 27th.

Stay tuned.

Disclaimer: A SCOOP Rating (Wall Street Consensus of Opening-day Premiums), is a general consensus taken, at press time, from Wall Street and investment professionals concerning how well an IPO might perform when it starts trading. The SCOOP Rating does not reflect the opinions of anyone associated with The SCOOP ratings should not be taken as investment advice. The rating merely reflects the opinion of the professionals at the time of publication and is subject to last-minute changes due to market conditions, changes in a specific offering and other factors, such as changes in the proposed offering terms and the shifting of investor interest in the IPO. The information offered is taken from sources we believe to be reliable, but we cannot guarantee the accuracy.

Disclosure: Nobody on the staff has a position in any stocks mentioned above, nor do they trade or invest in IPOs. The staff does not issue advice, recommendations or opinions.