Biggest IPOs of 2014

With 185 IPOs already announced, 2014 in on track to be another stellar year. We look back at some of the biggest IPOs of 2014, and what's still to come!

Last year there were 222 initial public offerings in the US, the highest since 2000. This, of course, was good news for investors, with more investment opportunities to choose from.

2014 has been no different, with healthcare (specifically biotechnology) and technology leading the charge. There has been 185 IPOs so far this year (as of Aug), and based on upcoming filings, like the behemoth Alibaba IPO, the current trajectory could make 2014 another record year. Here’s a look back of some of the biggest IPOs over the last eight months, and others we can expect in the remainder of the year.

Best returns of 2014

Zendesk (ZEN), a California-based customer service software company, went public on 15 May, 2014. It’s had the best return so far of any IPO, with an astounding 177% return as of end August. Zendesk raised $100 million for its IPO, starting at an offer price of $9.00, which is now greater than $24.00. There’s no doubt Zendesk is delighted with their IPO results so far.

While Zendesk sits in top position, there has been several other noteworthy IPOs:

2014 Top 5 IPOs “By % Return” (as of month end August 2014):

1. 177% – Zendesk (ZEN)

2. 167% – Ultragenyx Pharmaceutical (RARE)

3. 143% – TrueCar (TRUE)

4. 132% – El Pollo Loco Holdings (LOCO)

5. 123% – Tuniu (TOUR)

Leading industries

Of the 185 IPOs to date, the Healthcare and Technology industries have been hot, with 72 IPOs and 36 IPOs respectively. Growth is expected to continue in these sectors, which should incite additional companies to file.

2014 Most IPOs by Industry:

1. Healthcare (72)

2. Technology (36)

3.  Financial (20)

4.  Consumer Services (16)

5.  Oil & Gas (13)

2014 Top 5 IPOs in Healthcare “By % Return” (as of end Aug 2014)

1. 167% – Ultragenyx (RARE)

2. 116% – ZS Pharma (ZSPH)

3. 100% – Auspex Pharmaceuticals (ASPX)

4. 94% – Vital (VTL)

5. 82% – T2 Biosystems (TTOO)

2014 Top 5 IPOs in Technology “By % Return” (as of end Aug 2014)

1. 177% – Zendesk (ZEN)

2. 143% – TrueCar (TRUE)

3. 121% – GoPro (GPRO)

4. 103% – Arista Networks (ANET)

5. 94% – Energous (WATT)

What’s to come?

Several more high profile public offerings – expected to reach record highs – are still anticipated for the remainder of 2014, including Alibaba, Airbnb, J Crew, GoDaddy, Virgin America, Dropbox, Box, Square and Spotify. This list of recognizable companies will make the Fall and Winter seasons an exciting period for investors.

The showstopper: Alibaba

Alibaba (BABA) is indisputably the most talked of IPO in 2014. Alibaba is a privately-held online retail company based in China, similar to Amazon and eBay, but handles more transactions than both of them combined. It went public on September 19, 2014, raising a record $25 billion and surpassing the record held by Agricultural Bank of China in 2010.  Alibaba’s shares rose 38 percent on the first day of trading, to $93.89 after being priced at $68. More info on the Alibaba IPO here:


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