Floodgates of the IPO…

by Da'Von B.

It may seem like everyone is coming out with an IPO some of the most anticipated IPO’s coming from Facebook (2012), GroupOn (2011), LinkedIn (2011), and Match.com (2011/2012) just to name a few. With the recent news of Pandora recently filing for their own $100 million estimated IPO pundents and “reporters” have been wondering if we’re all experiencing a new tech or “dot-com” bubble reminiscent of the 90’s. That’s a dangerous assumption and doesn’t utilize much logic when posing such a question. Consider fifteen years ago would anyone have suggested that in 2010/2011 we’ll be able to connect with old friends from high school & college, transcribe our thoughts in 140 characters, make credit card transactions, listen to our own created radio stations, check our bank accounts, read and compose business and personal emails, and view discounts from small businesses 10 miles from our homes…all from our mobile phones? Not a single person would have suggested that would have been possible. The internet was NOT in wide use during the time frame of 1995-2000. People still didn’t know what exactly the internet was when you consider the difficult to make explanation by the Today Show (even though it was in 1994 it’s still an adequate time frame). But in a sense the only way to use the internet was through a telephone connection that lasted approximately 3-5 minutes to sign in and log on and the only way to use the internet was through a desktop computer, with the exception of laptops that had built-in ports to plug-in the same phone line. WiFi was still in its infancy and mobile phones were gradually taking off. Now in 2011 we’re able to do so much and in some cases more on mobile phones and now tablets, which leads us back to the start-ups preparing to release their own respective IPO’s. These start-ups may have some similarities to those 15 years ago, the difference is they have a wider net for potential adoption. There are hundreds of millions that use mobile phones as their primary source of getting news, searching the internet, listening to music, etc. The mobile phones have their own powerhouse of an OS and developers are tapping into that sector pushing the envelope as far as they can. With the IPO’s set to release soon and many wanting to invest in these companies it’s important to use common sense and do substantial research (something that many are supposed to do but fail to do it). The IPO’s coming out are very promising and will in all likely hood have a substantial return (Netflix comes to mind) as millions upon millions learn about the service and begin to utilize its offerings. This isn’t a new bubble we’re seeing, it’s an independent developer finally having a chance to offer their vision to the world and turning a profit, it’s a wide range of mobile services that make business and personal life a little easier to balance, it’s establishing a small communication tool where news is gathered from around the world and pushed instantly one tweet at a time, it’s the freelancer becoming his own CEO releasing something that can be used daily, hiring more employees, establishing a record in revenue after their first year, and seeing the potential of going public and growing the business.