IPO Market Overview: Grandma’s Candied Sweet Potatoes

Nov. 17, 2010 9:17 AM ETCSCO, PACB, TSLA, FN, RP, VLTC
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IPO Candy

The IPO market has stayed busy but it has become more selective. The past two weeks have been good overall but some deals, like Complete Genomics, have struggled and five others were pulled. There may be a reduction of risk tolerance creeping in as we note that the flavor of the IPO calendar is shifting a bit to big and “safe” deals like GM, Booz Allen, Aeroflex and LPL Investment Holdings.

Of the 10 deals priced in the last two weeks we have added RDA Micro (RDA), NOAH Holdings (NOAH), Inphi (IPHI) and Complete Genomics (GNOM) to our IPO Candy Ecosystem.

Of the eleven deals filed, four were China-based firms. The durability of the “China-play” names in the IPO market means in the next few weeks we will be adding an additional table to our bi-weekly Candygram to provide a look just at these China-based IPO names.

We will be looking more closely at Bitauto, Masergy Communications, Ambit Biosciences, and Tudou Holdings.

Overall, the IPO market continues to be fairly broad and deep but has moderated in terms of underlying strength. The approach of the year-end holidays may have something to do with it. Next week we might see a real separation, as only the sweet creamy deals get priced and trade well.


After a heady September and October, the overall performance median of the IPO Candy Ecosystem was dead flat. Beneath the surface, however, there were frothy gains like BroadSoft (BSFT $16.81 +87%) and heavy drops like Pacific Biosciences (PACB $12.25 –27%). Other top performers included Tesla (TSLA $30 +37%), Fabrinet (FN $19 +35%),RealPage (RP $30 +31%) and Motricity (MOTR $29 +31%).

See the IPO Candy Performance page below for more details.


Tesla got a notable boost from a new investment in the company by Panasonic (PC), a new Model “X” in development, and positive sentiment despite a typically weak quarterly report as a development-stage company.

SPS Commerce (SPSC) had a solid report and announced a secondary to support the expiration of the share lockup period. For them this is a smart move.

Sensata completed a major secondary (20 million shares at $24) and is well positioned in the “smarter planet” space.

Strong quarterly results were posted by RealD, Higher One, Motricity and BroadSoft.

QuinStreet (QNST) acquired carinsurance.com and continues to build a strong set of vertical online lead generation sites.

Fortinet (FTNT) was in the spotlight as rumors circulated that IBM might be acquiring the company. Although that didn’t happen, it did make investors aware of the strategic value they offer.

TeleNav (TNAV) has done poorly but some recent product announcements include some interesting social networking features.

Meru Networks (MERU) seems to be finding chinks in Cisco’s armor in the enterprise wireless space, and new product offerings look good.


For October, the IPO Candy Folio eked out a small 1.6% gain for the two weeks. We are making quite a few adjustments to the Folio today:

LOGM, 6% to 4%, take profits, insider selling
ACOM, 6% to 5%, take profits
TSLA, 5% to 4%, take profits
AONE, 5% to 4%, rebalancing
SWI, 4% to 3%, take profits, insider selling

SMT, 3% to 4%, lower price
MDMD, 3% to 4%, lower price
GNMK, 2% to 3%, lower price

PACB, 2%, Bioengineering
IPHI, 2%, Communication Semiconductors
GNOM, 2%, DNA Sequencing
FTNT, 2%, Cloud Security
MERU, 2%, Enterprise Wireless Networking

Our cash position declines from 13% to 6%.

Overall, these moves serve to broaden the Folio with more names and also adjust positions based on recent price moves.

More information and disclosures regarding the IPO Candy Folio can be found at:http://ipocandy.com/invest.


There are over a dozen deals actively marketing and scheduled for next week. The calendar has tipped toward more mature companies; however, there were several new smaller company filings of interest including Todou Holdings (online video in China) and Ambit Biosciences (cancer therapy).
Coverage and the Calendar

Most eyes will be on the GM IPO (link) and, to a lesser extent, Booz Allen and Aeroflex. We’ll also be watching LPL Investment Holdings, which may provide a window into how the IPO investment market may evolve.

The next two weeks should be relatively quiet in terms of new coverage and lockup expirations. Only NetSpend is slated for banker coverage (on November 28th). Two lockups, CBOE Holdings and Genmark Diagnostics, are scheduled to come off (on November 23rd).

This article was written by

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IPO Candy has been focused on IPO markets and companies since 2009. We provide analysis and resources like transcripts, roadshows, research notes, valuation models, quantitative and qualitative data. We publish on individual companies, market segments and the IPO market in general. We make a lot of our content available to all and have paid memberships for people who want our more in-depth materials.

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