Above the Crowd

Posts Tagged ‘IPO’

Investors Beware: Today’s $100M+ Late-stage Private Rounds Are Very Different from an IPO

February 25, 2015:

[An edited version of the following blog post originally appeared in a modified form in the pages of the weekend edition of the Financial Times last Saturday.] Every successful technology company raises money throughout its lifecycle, perhaps starting with a seed investment and progressing through Series A, B, C, late-stage investments, and, for the most successful companies, an IPO. Historically, different financial institutions specialized in different stages, because the assessment of risk and opportunity was considered unique at each stage — for example, a seed investor was unlikely to do late-stage financing, and vice versa. Over the last few years, the late-stage (pre-IPO) market has become the most competitive, the most crowded, and the frothiest of […]

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Why Facebook Clearly Belongs in the 10X Revenue Club

February 1, 2012:

Attached are my thoughts on the Facebook S-1 along with some quick stabs at valuation.  Brief disclosure, Benchmark Capital has a minority position in Facebook as a result of the acquisition of FriendFeed, a company that was incubated in our offices. I thought it would be useful to look at Facebook using the scorecard from our May 24 blog post, “ All Revenue is Not Created Equal, the Keys to the 10X Revenue Club .” For those that want to save time, the key point of this piece is that there is a broad disparity of Price/Revenue multiples for global Internet stocks, and that only a very small fraction of these companies achieve a […]

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On IPOs: If You Are Going To File, Make Sure You Price

September 14, 2011:

As you likely know, I am a big believer that the IPO can play a key role in the development of a company’s life. Moreover, I have argued that many in our ecosystem have an unhealthy anxiety regarding the dangers and consequences of being public. Lastly, I have argued that the IPO window is wide open for great companies – something I still believe today. All that said, I have been quite surprised by the recent trend in companies that file and then chose to delay. If you are going to file the S-1, it is imperative that you are prepared to follow through. Standing too long in […]

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Silicon Valley’s IPO Anxiety

November 15, 2010:

[Follow Me on Twitter] “Living in the limelight The universal dream For those who wish to seem. Those who wish to be Must put aside the alienation, Get on with the fascination…” — Limelight from Moving Pictures, Rush If you could travel back in time to the early 1990’s and ask Silicon Valley’s top entrepreneurs and private company executives about their long-term career ambitions, you would hear a constant theme – they all wanted to be part of an Initial Public Offering (IPO). Back then, taking a company public, either as a CEO, CFO, or founder, held an allure similar to that of a […]

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Note To Timothy Geithner: Do Startups & Venture Capitalists Really Need More Regulation?

March 26, 2009:

Mr. Geithner: In the late 1990’s, in response to the obvious financial shenanigans of large companies like Enron, Tyco, and WorldCom, Washington handed us the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.  I have no idea how effective Sarbanes has been at reducing fraud (it obviously did not prevent our current economic malaise), but I do know one thing.  Sarbox created a significant burden and tax on small companies that desired to tap into America’s public capital markets, and one that could have long-lasting negative impact on the long-term success of startups and innovation in America.  It’s pretty simple, Sarbanes-Oxley can costs $2-3mm to implement, and also is a huge burden […]

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