In yet another sign that the appetite for shares in fast-growing technology companies has returned, Ancestry.com, a genealogy website that lets users trace their family origins, filed for a $75m initial public offering on Monday.
In its filing with the SEC, the company revealed that it has almost 1m paying customers, and took in $107m over the last six months, with profits of $8m. The company plans to list on either Nasdaq or the New York Stock Exchange as ACOM. Morgan Stanley and Bank of America Merrill Lynch are the two lead underwriters.
Ancestry.com will be the latest tech company to go public after a nearly yearlong drought.
OpenTable’s debut was always going to be the real test of Wall Street’s reawakening interest in tech IPOs. In the event, it’s gone off like a rocket.
Other newcomers – like SolarWinds yesterday – were looking to raise much larger amounts and had stronger track records. Would Wall Street really be interested in a $40m deal from an internet company with only $56m in revenues last year and no profits?
The answer is a resounding “yes”. The shares were priced at $20, compared to an indicated price range last week of $12-14 , and are trading above $27 on their first day today. (Update: by the end of Thursday the shares had soared to $33.55, a first-day pop of more than 70 per cent. That really is reminiscent of the Dotcom years.)
Finally, some good news on the tech financing front.
April turned out to be the best month for tech IPOs in at least a year. OK, two is not a lot to shout about. But that was as many IPOs as the previous 11 months combined, and the stocks have traded up nicely (Chinese games company Changyou by 92 per cent, online education company Rosetta Stone by 66 per cent.)
That probably explains why we hear, through an unconfirmed source, that Jeff Jordan recently bought himself three new suits in preparation for an IPO roadshow.