LinkedIn Debut Doubles - But Are Tech IPOs back?
LinkedIn [$LNKD] doubled in its opening of public trading from its offer price of $45 giving hope to many other tech IPOs waiting in the wings.
The number of tech IPOs over the past ten years has been a paltry number and that has stifled the innovation cycle of investment and liquidity.
Mike Smerklo, CEO ofServiceSource said: "The healthy investor appetite for cloud services and collaborative technologies has fueled a strong valuation for LinkedIn, which is continued validation that Silicon Valley and the technology sector remain a tremendous growth area for investors and the overall economy."
If LinkedIn can maintain its strong valuation of about $8 billion it will have the currency to make acquisitions and grow at an accelerated pace.
But it remains to be seen if investor enthusiasm for LinkedIn will transfer to less highly visible tech companies.
Henry Blodget, a former star Wall Street analyst during the Internet boom years of the late 20th century, wrote that the high "pop" on the first day of trading showed that the underwriters had "screwed" LinkedIn and gave their institutional investors a large gift :
LinkedIn's underwriters, Morgan Stanley, Bank of America, et al, just screwed the company and its shareholders to the tune of an astounding $175 million.
But that's not quite true. The founders and other insiders have to wait six months before they can sell their shares, who knows what the value of LinkedIn will be by then. And institutional investors tend to be long-term investors.
It's day traders and other speculators that drive up share prices and create volatility - which is something public companies try to avoid. Google, for example, keeps its share price high to discourage day traders and reduce volatility in its share price.