Renaissance Capital 2012 US IPO Review
After the fastest start since 2000, with the most anticipated deal in years on the horizon, the US IPO market entered May in prime condition. However, the European debt crisis intervened yet again, and a market decline turned into a month-long drought for IPOs following Facebook's botched offering. Deal activity returned sporadically in the second half, but uncertainty surrounding the fiscal cliff resulted in a disappointing end to the year, with the second-slowest November and December since the tech bubble. Still, the overall results showed an improvement over last year. With $43 billion raised, total proceeds were at the highest level since 2007, and the 17% average total return was above market indices. Consumer companies, such as organic food maker Annie's and discount youth retailer Five Below, and enterprise software providers, most notably Guidewire and Workday, produced some of the best-performing deals. After starting the year at a record high, the pipeline was cut in half largely due to the passage of the JOBS Act, which allowed smaller companies to file confidentially and created a large shadow backlog.