April 2013 IPO Market Review

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May 6, 2013

While the widely forecast increase in deal flow may still be gaining traction, April did produce a small uptick in activity with 10 IPOs and gross proceeds of $3.1 billion—one more than the nine IPOs in the prior month but three shy of the 13 IPOs in April 2012. This brings the total number of IPOs for the first four months of 2013 to 30—43% below the 53 IPOs for the comparable period in 2012.

April IPO activity consisted of the following offerings:

  • Private equity–backed Taylor Morrison Home was the third IPO of the year to benefit from expectations of a recovery in the US housing market fueled by improving economic conditions and low interest rates. The previous two—Boise Cascade (an Idaho-based manufacturer of home construction material) and TRI Pointe Homes—both enjoyed respectable first-day gains from their offering price and continued solid aftermarket performance. Taylor Morrison priced an IPO upsized by 20% at the high end of the range—resulting in the third largest IPO of 2013—and produced a first-day gain of 5% from its offering price.
  • Chimerix, a biopharmaceutical company developing oral antiviral therapeutics for use in stem cell transplants, priced an IPO (also upsized by 20%) the following day at the midpoint of the range and jumped 34% in first-day trading—the third best opening day of the year.
  • Omthera Pharmaceuticals, an emerging specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of new therapies for abnormalities in blood lipids, priced the next day below the estimated range and fell 7% from its offering price on the first day. Omthera was the seventh life sciences IPO of the year—the sector accounts for 23% of the total number of US IPOs in the first four months of 2013.
  • Private equity–backed EVERTEC, a leading full-service transaction processor in Latin America and the Caribbean, priced an IPO upsized by 20% at the high end of the range and inched up 2% from its offering price on the first day of trading.
  • Rally Software, a provider of cloud-based solutions to manage Agile software development, priced a modestly upsized IPO above the range and saw a first-day gain of 27%.
  • Fairway Group Holdings, which operates 12 high-volume grocery stores in the Greater New York City metropolitan area, priced above the range and traded up 33% on the first day.
  • Intelsat, the world’s largest satellite service provider, continued the steady flow of private-equity backed companies going public. The highly leveraged company priced a downsized IPO below the range and opened below its offering price before climbing back to end the first day of trading 7% above its offering price.
  • Taminco, the world’s largest pure-play producer of alkylamines and alkylamine derivatives, priced below the range and ended its first day of trading 3% below its offering price.
  • Blackhawk Network Holdings, a Safeway spin-off that provides prepaid gift, telecom and debit card products for consumers and businesses, priced above the range and increased 13% in first-day trading.
  • SeaWorld Entertainment, a private equity–backed operator of 11 US theme parks including SeaWorld and Busch Gardens, upsized its IPO by 30% and priced at the high end of the range to produce the second largest IPO of the year. In another sign of reduced investor wariness of heavily indebted companies, SeaWorld spouted a 24% first day gain.

The average 2013 IPO to date has enjoyed a 17% first-day gain from its offering price. In comparison, the average IPO for all of 2012 saw a 16% first-day gain. Five 2013 IPOs—17% of the total—were “broken” (IPOs whose stock closes below the offering price on their opening day), compared to 20% of all IPOs in 2012.

Buoyed by a number of large private equity–backed IPOs, the median offering size in 2013 to date of $141.2 million is at an all-time high. With an increasingly bifurcated market, the median deal size of VC-backed company IPOs so far this year is $77.9 million—the lowest level since 2006—while the median deal size for non-VC backed company IPOs is $289.3 million—almost double the average in the prior 10 years.

The median annual revenue of IPO companies increased 5% from $133.6 million in 2012 to $140.5 million in the first four months of 2013. Conversely, with the IPO market receptive to emerging companies, the percentage of profitable companies going public fell from 55% in 2012 to 43% in the first four months of 2013—the lowest level since the 26% in both 1999 and 2000.

While year-to-date US IPO activity in 2013 remains well short of the level for the comparable period in 2012, recent filing activity and strong aftermarket performance by many of the 2013 IPO class—43% were trading 20% or more above their offering price at the end of April—bode well for future deal flow.

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