Companies that had their IPO in 2018 had interesting timing entering the public market. The year was a pivotal one for the world of finance and technology. It marked the arrival of several high-profile Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) that left a lasting impact on the business landscape.
The 2018 economic climate conveyed optimism, confidence, and growth across diverse sectors. This positive environment played a pivotal role in the decisions of these seven prominent companies to go public.
The tech and biotech sectors, retail and consumer goods, and security and technology industries all saw favorable conditions for IPOs. These companies seized the moment, raising significant capital and cementing their positions in their respective industries.
The economic conditions of 2018 provided a platform for these companies to thrive, innovate, and contribute to the evolving business landscape. While numerous companies went public in that year, we will delve into the most prominent ones.
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7 Companies That Had Their IPO in 2018
- Dropbox, Inc. (NASDAQ: DBX)
- Moderna, Inc. (NASDAQ: MRNA)
- Dell Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: DELL)
- BJ's Wholesale Club Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: BJ)
- Yeti Holdings Inc. (NYSE: YETI)
- ADT Inc. (NYSE: ADT)
- Spotify Technology S.A. (NYSE: SPOT)
Dropbox, Inc. (NASDAQ: DBX)
Our first of the seven companies that had their IPO in 2018; Dropbox. A household name in cloud storage, Dropbox made waves when it went public on March 23, 2018. The company's IPO was valued at $9.2 billion, and it offered 36 million shares to the public at a price of $21 per share. Dropbox went public under the ticker symbol "DBX" on the NASDAQ stock exchange
Dropbox's IPO in 2018 was a significant milestone for the company and the broader cloud storage and file-sharing industry. The IPO was closely watched, as Dropbox had become a household name in online file storage and collaboration.
Dropbox had amassed a substantial user base before going public. The platform's easy-to-use file storage and sharing services had made it a popular choice for both individual users and businesses. The company's decision to go public was not just about raising capital but also about raising its profile. Going public allowed Dropbox to gain more visibility, attract top talent, and compete more effectively with tech giants like Google and Microsoft.
And it succeeded. After its IPO, Dropbox continued to innovate, expand its product offerings, and explore partnerships to remain competitive in the ever-evolving cloud storage and collaboration market.
Moderna, Inc. (NASDAQ: MRNA)
Next up is a company that had their IPO in 2018 but you might not’ve heard of them until 2020. Moderna's IPO on December 6, 2018, was a monumental moment in the development of mRNA-based therapeutics. The company raised approximately $604 million, offering 26.3 million shares at $23 per share. Moderna's technology has played a pivotal role in the development of COVID-19 vaccines, highlighting its importance in the world of biotechnology.
Their IPO was a groundbreaking event in the biotechnology sector. It was one of the first companies to go public with a focus on messenger RNA (mRNA) technology. This novel approach to drug development held significant promise and garnered widespread attention.
The decision to go public in 2018 was influenced by several factors. Firstly, the economic climate was favorable for biotechnology companies. Investors were increasingly interested in innovative medical technologies. Moderna's mRNA platform held the potential to revolutionize vaccine development, cancer therapies, and various other medical treatments.
Moderna's mRNA technology, which allows for the rapid development of vaccines and therapies, had gained recognition for its potential to address unmet medical needs. The company's approach was versatile, enabling it to develop and test multiple candidates efficiently. The positive sentiment surrounding breakthroughs in mRNA research and Moderna's leading position in the field made it an attractive prospect for investors.
Moderna's IPO not only served as a capital-raising event but also allowed the company to gain wider recognition and attract top scientific talent. The funds raised from the IPO enabled Moderna to advance its research, initiate clinical trials, and bring its mRNA-based products closer to market approval.
Since its IPO, Moderna's impact on global healthcare has been substantial. The company played a pivotal role in the development of COVID-19 vaccines. This represented a groundbreaking achievement in the fight against the pandemic. Its technology demonstrated its effectiveness and versatility on a global scale.
Dell Technologies Inc. (NYSE: DELL)
Dell Technologies, a global technology company, returned to the public market on December 28, 2018, after being a private entity for several years. Dell Technologies, originally a publicly traded company, went private in 2013 in a landmark deal led by founder Michael Dell and private equity firm Silver Lake Partners.
The privatization allowed the company to restructure and pursue a more flexible, long-term strategy without the pressure of quarterly earnings reports. However, in 2018, the company decided to re-enter the public market, albeit through a different route.
Instead of a traditional IPO, Dell Technologies chose to conduct a unique financial transaction. It involved the creation of a tracking stock for its subsidiary, VMware, which was already publicly traded. This tracking stock, listed on the NYSE under the ticker symbol DVMT, represented Dell's stake in VMware. (VMWare now trades on the NYSE under VMW.)
The IPO transaction raised approximately $21.7 billion, making it one of the largest tech IPOs in history. The funds were intended to support the company's efforts to pay down debt and invest in research and development. This would drive innovation and expansion in the competitive technology industry. And it seems to have worked…
Dell Technologies' return to the public market was a complex financial maneuver. It marked a strategic shift in the company's journey. The move enabled the company to navigate the evolving tech landscape with greater agility. It also showcased its adaptability in responding to market dynamics.
BJ's Wholesale Club Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: BJ)
BJ's Wholesale Club's return to the public market in 2018 was a noteworthy event for the retail industry. The company's IPO on June 27, 2018, marked a significant step in its journey, as it re-entered the public market to raise capital for expansion and debt reduction.
BJ's, a leading membership-based warehouse club, had previously gone private in 2011. That followed an acquisition by private equity firms Leonard Green & Partners and CVC Capital Partners. However, in 2018, the company decided to go public again…
The economic climate in 2018 was characterized by several factors that influenced BJ's Wholesale Club's decision to go public. First, a strong job market and tax cuts had boosted consumer confidence and increased consumer spending. The retail and consumer goods sector was experiencing growth, making it an opportune time for companies in this space to access the public markets.
The IPO offered 37.5 million shares at a price of $17 each, raising approximately $637.5 million in capital. The IPO proceeds paid down debt and funded expansion, opening new stores and improving the company's e-commerce capabilities.
BJ's Wholesale Club's decision to go public was well-received by investors, reflecting their confidence in the company's business model. The company's membership-based approach, which allowed consumers access to discounted prices on bulk purchases, had proven successful. BJ's Wholesale Club aimed to capitalize on this success and strengthen its competitive position.
The company's return to the public market not only raised capital for growth but also provided a platform for it to gain greater visibility and attract investment to support.
Yeti Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: YETI)
Yeti Holdings, a manufacturer of high-quality outdoor lifestyle products, held its IPO on October 25, 2018, making it one of the notable public offerings in the consumer goods industry. Yeti's IPO was significant for several reasons.
Strong consumer spending, especially in the United States, provided a favorable backdrop for companies like Yeti. As more people embraced outdoor activities and an active lifestyle, the demand for durable, high-quality products increased.
Yeti offered 16 million shares to the public at a price of $18 per share, raising capital to fuel its expansion plans. The IPO proceeds were designated for product development, marketing, and general corporate purposes. Yeti's commitment to producing premium products for outdoor enthusiasts had already made it a recognized brand in the industry.
One of the reasons Yeti's IPO garnered attention was its unique brand identity and strong customer loyalty. The company had cultivated a dedicated customer base that appreciated its rugged coolers, drinkware, and outdoor gear designed for adventurers and outdoor enthusiasts. The company's "wildly stronger, keeps ice longer" philosophy resonated with consumers who demanded products that could withstand the rigors of outdoor adventures.
Since its IPO, Yeti has continued to innovate and expand its product offerings. The company's focus on quality and durability remains at the core of its brand, attracting consumers who value long-lasting and reliable outdoor products.
While the company’s brand recognition remains strong, the stock price has wavered in recent years. The share price flirted with $100 before settling in the $40s range, which is still more than double the IPO price.
ADT Inc. (NYSE: ADT)
ADT Inc., a prominent provider of security and automation solutions for homes and businesses, re-entered the public market on January 19, 2018. The company offered 111.25 million shares at $14 each, raising approximately $1.47 billion. ADT's IPO aimed to help reduce its debt and provide resources for future expansion.
The IPO funds were meant to reduce debt, expand smart home and business security presence, and invest in cutting-edge security solutions through research and development.
With a history dating back to 1874, had previously been a publicly traded company before going private in 2016 following an acquisition by private equity firm Apollo Global Management. ADT Inc.'s return to the public market allowed it to access capital for expansion and technology development.
The economic backdrop, with increasing concerns about safety and security, was a significant driver for its decision to go public. The company's IPO not only strengthened its financial position but also provided a platform to continue leading in the security and automation solutions sector. Now onto the last of the companies that had their IPO in 2018…
Spotfiy Technology S.A. (NYSE: SPOT)
Spotify's IPO in 2018 was a defining moment for the music streaming industry. The company, known for its massive user base and extensive music catalog, chose a unique path to go public, setting a precedent with its direct listing.
In a direct listing, Spotify bypassed the traditional Initial Public Offering process, where new shares are issued to raise capital. Instead, it allowed existing shareholders to sell their shares directly to the public. This approach was a bold move, and it garnered significant attention from both Wall Street and the tech industry.
By opting for a direct listing, Spotify aimed to achieve several objectives. First, it avoided the need to pay hefty underwriting fees to investment banks. This cost-saving strategy allowed the company to maintain more of its capital. Second, it offered existing shareholders the opportunity to sell their shares directly to the public, which increased liquidity in the stock. Additionally, a direct listing allowed Spotify to set a reference price based on recent private transactions, which was seen as a fairer value for the company.
On the day of its IPO, Spotify's stock started trading under the symbol "SPOT" on the New York Stock Exchange. The stock's opening price was $165.90 per share, valuing the company at around $29.5 billion. Despite concerns about volatility, Spotify's stock performed well, and the company's market capitalization soared, reaching over $27 billion in valuation shortly after its debut.
Companies that had their IPO in 2018 – Preparation Meets Opportunity
In summary, 2018 witnessed the resurgence of several companies in the public markets and the emergence of new tech and biotech giants. Dropbox, Moderna, Dell Technologies, BJ's Wholesale Club, Yeti Holdings, ADT Inc., and Spotify all made significant strides in their respective industries through their IPOs.
These companies raised substantial capital and garnered attention from investors, making them noteworthy examples of successful public offerings in 2018. As time has passed since their IPOs, these companies continue to evolve, innovate, and shape the business landscape, leaving a lasting impact on their industries.
These seven companies serve as a testament to the dynamism of the financial markets, where innovative ideas, transformative technologies, and solid business strategies converge to shape the future. Their journeys from IPOs to established public entities showcase the opportunities and challenges faced by companies as they navigate the ever-changing world of business and finance.
The IPO market of 2018 was characterized by a blend of optimism, innovation, and a strong appetite for investment in various sectors. The companies that had their IPO in 2018 were diverse, to say the least.
Of course, the real money was made by those who invested in these companies BEFORE their IPO. To learn how you can really get in on the ground floor, click here.
Complete List of Companies That Had Their IPO in 2018
- ADT Inc.
- Arlo Technologies
- Aston Martin
- Bank Syariah Indonesia
- Berry Petroleum Company
- BJ's Wholesale Club
- Bloom Energy
- China Tower
- Cushman & Wakefield
- Dell Technologies
- Domo, Inc.
- Dropbox Inc.
- Elastic NV
- Equitable Holdings
- Focus Financial Partners
- Gangenf Lithium
- Mesa Air Group
- Moderna Inc.
- Nikola Corporation
- Nio Inc.
- Niu Technologies
- Pivotal Software
- Quilter plc
- Siemens Healthineers
- Smartsheet Inc.
- SoftBank Group
- Spotify Technology S.A.
- Tencent Music
- TRG Pakistan
- Unity Biotechnology
- Vici Properties
- Victory Capital
- VMware Carbon Black
- The Works
- Yeti Holdings
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