How does Facebook's IPO compare to others?

Steven Loeb · May 19, 2012 · Short URL:

Not only recent ones, but here's a list of other big names from the last couple decades

The big day finally arrived yesterday when Facebook, after months of intrigue and speculation, at last went public.

Anyone expecting a big splash, though, must have been sorely disappointed.

Facebook raised $16 billion for its IPO, the largest ever for a tech company, when it priced its shares at $38.

While Facebook’s stock did manage to rise over 12% to spike at $42.05, it eventually came down again, ending at $38.23, a mere 0.6% rise over its initial price. Not exactly earth shattering. In fact, very anticlimactic - given the hoopla leading up to the big event. 

So how does Facebook compare to some other IPOs from the past year?

  • Yelp went public on March 2, 2012, and saw its shares, which had an IPO price of $15, go up 67% in its first day of trading to $24.58. It ended the day with $24.50, an increase of 63% on its initial price. The IPO raised  $171.5 million.
  • Social network LinkedIn made its debut a year ago today after raising $352.8 million. The stock hit a high of $115, before ending its first day at $94.25, more than doubling its IPO price of $45. 
  • Groupon went public on November 4, 2011. The initial IPO price was $20, and the company saw its stock surge on opening day, going up 50% to hit $30. The stock closed at $26.11, a 31% gain. Of course, Groupon had a particularly rocky road to get there. The company raised $700 million in its IPO.
  • Angie’s List raised $130 million for its IPO, and opened at $13 a share on November 17, 2011. The rating site saw its stock jump nearly 40%, going all the way up to $18.75, before closing at $16.26, still up 25%.
  • Game developer Zynga, whose games including FarmVille and CityVille, had an IPO price of $10 with a $7 billion valuation. Its stock price dropped 5 percent, closing at $9.50 on December 16, 2011, after gaining 15 percent.
  • Online radio station Pandora went public on June 15, 2011, raising a $235 million IPO. It opened at $16 a share. It peaked at $24 a share, closing at $17.42, a 9% gain.
  • Demand Media and Nielsen went public on the same day, January 25, 2011. Demand Media had an IPO price of $17, and hit a peak of 40% on its initial trading day to reach $23 a share, before ending at $22.65, a rise of 33.2%. Nielsen, whose IPO price was $23, saw its shares rise 9% to $25, eventually closing at 8.7%. Nielsen raised $1.6 billion in its IPO, while Demand Media raised $151.3 million.
  • The Carlyle Group, a global asset management firm, went public on May 3, 2012. Its IPO price was $22 and it settled at $22.05, an increase of 0.2 percent, after peaking at $22.45. The Carlyle Group raised $671 million.

Given Facebook's size and the publicity surrounding its IPO, its unimpressive first day becomes more stark when compared to some of the other giant IPOs of the past 30 years.

  • Netscape stock was initially offered at $28 per share on August 9, 1995. The stock more than doubled, closing at $58.25, raising nearly $3 billion for Netscape.
  • Yahoo had an IPO number of $24.50 when it went public on April 12, 1996. Its shares hit a high of $43, before ending at $33, raising $33.8 million for Yahoo.
  • Microsoft went public March 13, 1986, opening at $21.00 per share. It ended its first day at $$27.75 a share, up 32%, raising $61 million.
  • Apple went public on December 12, 1980 at $22 a share, going up 30% on its first day to close at $29. It raised less than $100 million.
  • Amazon, which went public on May 15, 1997, and had an IPO price of $18. The stock hit a high of $30 efore settling at $23.50, a gain of 30%. The IPO netted Amazon $54 million.
  • Google raised $1.9 billion when it went public on Aug. 19, 2004, with an IPO price of $85 that ended at $100 on its first day of trading, up 18%.

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Pandora, the leading internet radio service, gives people music they love
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