Times are tough for the IPO market. Without a single IPO in September and an average year-to-date fall of more than 15%, the window appears closed while companies that chose to go public may have wished to wait. Technology in particular, is always an interesting industry to look at in rough times as it can be like a proxy for measuring the progress, and fundamental strength of recent innovation and economic advance. How then, is the technology industry doing compared with the rest of the IPO class of 2011?
All industries are doing poorly, but technology has the dubious title of worst-performing industry. Social-networking site FriendFinder Networks is down more than 80%, one of the worst-performing public offerings this year second only to health care’s Kips Bay Medical. Interestingly, Business and Financial Service IPOs lead the pack by being the least bad. Very consumer-facing businesses like Dunkin Brands, Zillow and Teavana are holding their own and actually growing.
Of the technology crew, LinkedIn and HomeAway might be doing well, but for everyone one of those, there’s two Pandora’s and Renren’s to keep mind of. It’s in this shadow that questions of web 2.0 viability and a possible new bubble continue to brew. Given the situation, perhaps it’s not so surprising that Groupon, Zynga and other tech-IPOs are delaying their offerings, or putting them on hold completely. Scrutiny of a tech company’s fundamentals is definitely at a high.