When a company has an IPO, it means the first time it will offer to the general public its stock for sale, hence the reason it is called an ‘initial public offering’. An initial public offering is a big deal and as such, most private companies are looking forward to the day they’d go public, as it’ll for the most part, help build their credibility and increase their chances of getting additional funding. Before we go into listing the top 13 notable companies that had their IPO in the year 2014, let us first understand the meaning of IPO, how it works, and why it is important. Come along!


What is IPO and Why is it Important?

IPO is the process of making available for the first time to members of the general public shares of once a private company through the issuance of brand-new stock. A corporation will make the transition from being privately owned to being owned by the public when it does this.

Because it often involves a share premium for current private investors, the transition from a private to a public firm can be a crucial opportunity for private investors to completely realize rewards from their investment. At the same time, public investors are permitted to participate in the offering.

Understanding Initial Public Offerings

A company is private until it has an IPO. As a private company that hasn’t gone public yet, the business has grown with a relatively small number of owners. These include early investors like the founders, family, and friends, as well as professional investors like venture capitalists or angel investors.

An initial public offering (IPO) is a big deal for a company because it lets the company raise a lot of money. This makes it easier for the company to grow and get bigger. The company may also be able to borrow money on better terms if it is more open and has a good reputation for selling its shares.

When a business has grown to the point where it thinks it can handle the strict rules of the SEC and the benefits and responsibilities of having public shareholders, it will start to say that it wants to go public.

Usually, a company will reach this stage of growth when its private value has hit about $1 billion, which is also known as “unicorn status.” But private companies with strong fundamentals and proven ability to make money can also be eligible for an IPO, based on how competitive the market is and how well they can meet listing requirements.

Through underwriting due research, a company’s IPO shares are given a price. When a company goes public, the private shareholders who owned shares before become public shareholders, and their shares are now worth the public selling price. Underwriting shares can also have special rules for going from private to public ownership.

What Is the Purpose of an Initial Public Offering?

Some of the main reasons to do an IPO are to raise money through the sale of shares, to give business founders and early investors access to cash, and to take advantage of a higher valuation.

Companies That Had Their IPO In 2014

Here is a list of 13 notable companies that had their IPO in the year 2014

#1. Alibaba

Alibaba is an e-commerce platform started by Jack Ma in his own apartment in 1995. It has grown to become China’s largest internet corporation, with over 500 million users on a daily basis. Compared to a cross between Amazon and eBay, Alibaba offers a diverse range of goods and services to its customers, including e-commerce and Internet payments. 

Alibaba made history with its IPO, raising $21.8 billion and becoming the most prominent single IPO of all time, selling at $92.70 per share. Through R&D, technical innovation, and acquisitions, the money from the IPO will be used to extend Alibaba’s operating procedures and boost its international position.

#2. GoPro

GoPro is an American technology business that was established in 2002 and manufactures action cameras as well as accessories. Its cameras have gained popularity among users because of their ability to capture high-quality film in challenging environments, such as when they are used during action sports.

GoPro raised $427.2 million in its initial public offering by charging $24 per share. GoPro intends to use the IPO money to boost its R&D efforts and product offerings. The company also intends to invest in cutting-edge technologies to improve the performance and functionality of its cameras while making them more user-friendly and accessible to a broader customer base.

#3. Virgin America

Virgin America was an American airline that focused on customer service and fun on low-cost flights. The airline opened in 2004, and Alaska Airlines bought it in 2018. It went to many of North America’s biggest towns, and it was known for its high-tech features and stylish cabins.

On November 13, 2014, Virgin America made its debut on the stock market by offering $300 million shares at a price of $23 per share, which it would utilize to expand its company’s overall operations.

#4. IMS Health

IMS Health is a data and analytics firm that focuses on providing healthcare industry insights. The company was founded in 1954 and is based in Connecticut, United States. Healthcare providers, pharmaceutical companies, and other organizations use their data and analytics capabilities to make informed judgments about healthcare products and services.

On April 4, 2014, IMS Health went public. Offering 65 million shares at a price of $20 per share. The shares finished at $22.20, raising $1.3 billion for the corporation.

#5. TrueCar

TrueCar is a car firm that gives pricing information on what other people have paid for new and used cars. AAA, USAA, and all have their own private-label online auto-buying programs. TrueCar’s primary goal is to help consumers make informed auto purchasing decisions and to link dealerships with potential buyers.

In May 2014, TrueCar went public generating $108.9 million in its IPO at a price range of $12 to $14 per share. TrueCar plans to use the funds to continue its expansion and growth efforts, including improving its services and technology to better serve consumers and dealerships.

#6. Zendesk

The 6th company on my list of companies that had their IPO in 2014 is Zendesk. Zendesk is a forward-thinking firm that has transformed the way businesses perform customer care and help desk functions. With its splitting technology and web-based system, Zendesk has made such important portions available as ad hoc services that organizations can readily acquire, lowering upfront costs.

Zendesk made $100 million in its initial public offering, by selling its stock at $9 per share. Because of the funding raised, Zendesk expanded its operations and upgraded its platform. Furthermore, the cash will be used to strengthen the company’s marketing and sales activities, allowing it to reach a larger audience and drive growth.

#7. Mobileye

Mobileye is an Israeli technology startup that creates advanced driver assistance systems and self-driving vehicles. Car manufacturers employ their technology to increase vehicle safety and build self-driving automobiles.

On August 1, 2014, Mobileye went public. The business set a price of $25 per share for its 35.6 million shares. And the shares closed the day at $37 per share. The public offering netted the business $890 million.

#8. King

King is a mobile video game developer well known for its best-selling Candy Crush Saga. The game has proven to be an important source of revenue for the organization, accounting for approximately 80% of overall revenues. Unfortunately, King seemed to have had difficulty convincing investors that it can expand its portfolio and generate other profitable games despite the popularity of Candy Crush Saga.

The IPO raised $500 million for the company, with shares priced at $22.50 each. The IPO revenues will be used to fund research and development for new games, diversifying King’s revenue streams. In addition, the company will emphasize acquisitions that will allow it to widen its market footprint and reach new consumer bases.

#9. LendingClub

Lending Club is a pioneer in the alternative finance industry, specifically in the online peer-to-peer lending market. Since its inception in 2007, the company has transformed the way people acquire money by creating a website that allows borrowers to contact investors directly, eliminating the middleman and lowering expenses. It went public in 2014 and raised $870 million in its initial public offering, selling the stock for $15 per share.

The funds raised allowed the company to invest in technological and industrial progress, which improved the platform’s operation and increased investor and loan applicant participation. Lending Club will also use the funds to expand its reach and customer base, allowing it to serve more people who want financing.

#10. Weibo Corporation

Weibo Corporation is a Chinese social media firm that operates the Sina Weibo microblogging platform. Users can submit short messages, photographs, and videos, and follow other users, just as on Twitter. Weibo is a major social networking website in China, with over 500 million registered users.

On April 17, 2014, Weibo Corporation went public. The business set the price for its 16.8 million shares at $170 per share. And the shares finished the day at a price of $20.24 a share. The IPO netted the business $285.6 million.

#11. Box

Box is a cloud storage and file-sharing service that allows users to securely store and share files online. The company was created in 2005 and is based in California, United States. Businesses of all sizes use Box’s platform to store and share documents, collaborate on projects, and manage workflow.

Box offered its first equity shares on January 23, 2015, at  $14 per share for 12.5 million shares. The company made a tremendous impression on IPO day, closing at $23.23 per share, well above the offering price. The IPO raised around $175 million for Box.

#12. Citizens Financial Group

Citizens Financial Group is a banking and financial services firm based in Rhode Island, United States. Individuals, organizations, and institutions can use the company’s financial goods and services, which include banking, lending, and investing.

On September 24, 2014, Citizens Financial Group went public. The business set the price for its 140 million shares at $21.50 per share. And the stock finished the day at a price of $23.08 per share. The public offering netted the corporation $3 billion.

#13. El Polo Loco

The last company on my list of companies that had their IPO in 2014 is El Pollo Loco. El Pollo Loco is a fast-food business specializing in flame-grilled chicken. The company was formed in Mexico in 1975 and has since grown to over 480 sites in the United States. In addition to chicken, they serve tacos, burritos, and salads.

On July 25, 2014, El Pollo Loco went public. Offering 7.1 million shares at a price of $15 per share. The shares closed at $24, raising $107 million for the corporation.

Why Would a Company Not Want to Go Public?

Many things could make a company decide not to go public. Some of these reasons are that an IPO is hard and expensive to do, the founders have to give up full control, and stricter reporting is needed to follow SEC rules.

Can Anyone Put Money into an IPO?

When a new IPO comes out, there is often more demand than there is supply. Because of this, there is no promise that everyone who wants to buy shares in an IPO will be able to do so. People who want to take part in an IPO may be able to do so through their brokerage company. However, sometimes an IPO is only available to a firm’s larger clients. You could also invest in an IPO through a mutual fund or some other type of financial vehicle.

Is an IPO a Good Way to Make Money?

In general, IPOs are popular with investors because the price of the stock tends to move a lot on the day of the IPO and in the days after. This can sometimes lead to big gains, but it can also lead to big losses. At the end of the day, investors should rate each IPO based on the company’s prospectus, their financial situation, and how much risk they are willing to take.

Who gets the Money When a Company Goes Public?

When a company goes public, the money goes straight to the company. After the IPO, when the shares trade on a stock market, none of that money goes to the company. This is the money that buyers trade with each other when they buy and sell shares on the exchange.

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