Last week Avaya announced that it would seek to raise $1 billion in an IPO.
As Ben Levisohn recently pointed out in the Wall Street Journal “The IPO game is notoriously dicey for retail investors”, but for the companies going public it can provide a windfall of cash to help drive R&D and additional product development. With the recent results of the LinkedIn offering I can see why Avaya might be enticed to jump into the market. However, the IPO game is getting crowded with Pandora going public today (surged to $26 share but dropped back to $18 a share later in the session) and Groupon, Facebook, Twitter and Zynga all looking to possibly go public sometime later this year.
Thursday’s filing disclosed Avaya has lost more than $3.6 billion since it was taken private in 2007 in an $8.3 billion buyout. The engineers of that deal, Silver Lake and TPG, own a 72 percent stake in Avaya, according to Thursday’s filing.
In the past year, Avaya has introduced more than 60 new products and services to boost its revenue. Through the six months ending March 31, Avaya’s revenue totaled $2.76 billion, a 16 percent increase from the same period last year. But its losses have widened to $615 million in the current year from $421 million the previous year.
I will say that I was surprised at the financials reported above in the Yahoo Finance news post. With Avaya selling stock publicly they’ll now need to file quarterly statements with the SEC something they haven’t had to-do as a privately held company. I’m curious if the red ink will drive away future or existing customers. What do you think?