initial public offerings (IPOs) trading on American exchanges

Monday, April 16, 2012

IPOs this week (16 April 2012) : 5 companies scheduled

The following are scheduled to IPO this week:
  1. Splunk (SPLK);  on the Nasdaq; seeking to raise $135 million
  2. Infoblox (BLOX); on the NYSE; wants to raise $106 million
  3. Proofpoint Inc.( PFPT);  on the Nasdaq; seeking to raise $74 million
  4. Midstates Petroleum (MPO); on the NYSE; wants to raise $432 million
  5. Tumi (TUMI );  on the NYSE; wants to raise $320 million

Splunk hopes to raise as much as $135 million. It makes software that allows companies to collect and analyze large quantities of data, especially that generated by machines.

Machine-generated data are produced by nearly every software application and electronic device operating on a company's system, and contains time-stamped records of every event, ranging from user activity to security threats.

Splunk boasts that more than 3,700 customers, including a majority of the Fortune 100, use its software, including Bank of America Corp., BAC +1.27% Harvard University and Zynga Inc. ZNGA -7.64% Its software can search, analyze and monitor data in real time.

Splunk's revenue rose 83% to $121 million in the fiscal year that ended Jan. 31, and it reported a net loss of $11 million, compared with a loss of $3.8 million a year earlier. The company has never been profitable.

Infoblox wants to raise $106 million. The company combines hardware and software in appliances that it sells to automate businesses' computer network functions, such as network discovery and device configuration. Its appliances have been sold to more than 5,400 businesses, including Adobe Systems Inc., (ADBE), Barclays, Caterpillar (CAT), the Federal Aviation Administration and IBM Corp.

When businesses automate network control, they stop using manual processes for routine network tasks and are able to create what Infoblox calls "dynamic networks" that allow data centers to perform virtualization, cloud computing, software-as-a-service and high-speed networking that support multiple business operations. Automating network control becomes more important as networks become bigger and more complicated because of the growth in the number of devices and software applications that need to connect to the network.

Infoblox, which was founded in 1999, says it believes that the market for automated network control will grow as more businesses replace their legacy network controls. For the six months that ended Jan. 31, net revenue increased 31% to $80.7 million, and it reported a net loss of $2.8 million, compared with a loss of $132,000 in the same period a year earlier. The company has a history of losses, although it was profitable in fiscal 2010.

A third software firm, Proofpoint Inc. offers security software for large and midsize businesses to prevent the theft of sensitive data through attacks and phishing messages, to archive information as well as to securely share information with customers and business partners. Its products are used by about 2,400 customers, including 26 of the Fortune 100. Its top-line growth hasn't been quite as swift as Splunk or Infoblox; in 2011, revenue rose 26% to $82 million, and it reported a net loss of $20 million, down slightly from a loss of $21 million in 2010.

Also on deck for the week are two larger nontech deals: oil exploration company Midstates Petroleum Co. and luxury luggage and briefcase maker Tumi Holdings Inc.

Tumi makes carry-on luggage, garment bags, briefcases and totes. Founded in 1975, it sells its wares through its own retail stores and website as well as through luggage retailers, department stores and third-party websites such as Inc. (AMZN). It plans to increase its own retail store base in North America and internationally, aiming to add eight to 16 new ones in each of the next three years, and to expand its wholesale distribution.

Tumi said it believes many consumers deferred purchases of its products during the financial crisis, and postcrisis sales appear to be increasing due in part to these deferred purchases. In 2011, the company's net sales increased 31% to $330 million, and it reported net income of $17 million, compared with $104,000 in 2010.

Midstates focuses on oil fields in Louisiana that were discovered by major oil companies in the 1940s and 1950s, but weren't fully developed due to the price of oil, state taxes and regulatory limitations.

Since the third quarter of 2008, Midstates has drilled 57 wells, 93% of which are in commercial production. The company's average daily production has increased during the period by a compound annual growth rate of 96%, and it aims to drill as many as 67 wells this year. In 2011, Midstates' total revenue more than tripled to $214 million, and the company swung to a profit of $17 million, from a loss of $16 million in 2010.

Though its financials are good, oil-exploration companies are usually considered higher-risk deals due to the volatility of energy prices and the possibility that they may not be able to take all their wells into viable production.

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