The term “going public” is used when a company raises money by issuing its stock to investors via an initial public offering (IPO). To put in simply they are selling a portion of the company to willing buyers at a specified price. Depending on the initial price and the amount of shares offered and sold provides the company with the eventual amount they “raise” from the IPO. This list will examine which 10 companies raised the largest amounts of money during their IPO on an American stock exchange.
10. UBER – 5/9/19 – $8.10 Billion (NYSE)
Although Uber made this list, it’s IPO was one of the most historically worst market debut’s, posting the largest first day dollar loss in IPO history. At one point investors were valuing Uber at $120 Billion, which would have been the most valuable company to debut on a US stock market, however after the IPO it’s valuation was just $69 Billion. Since the IPO Uber has faced a number of backlashes in regards to their culture and surge pricing tactics. However, its recent acquisitions of Uber Eats and Drizzly have kept the company stable during the tumultuous pandemic during which the company posted huge loses.
9. Kraft Foods – 6/12/01 – $8.68 Billion (NYSE)
8. AT&T – 4/6/00 – $10.62 Billion (NYSE)
AT&T’s successful IPO came just in the nick of time before the dot-com bubble burst. While many tech companies were withdrawing their IPO’s AT&T went with it and raked in a then-U.S. record $10.62 Billion, more than their pre-offer value. Today, it is the third largest wireless provider in the world behind Verizon and T-Mobile. Yeah, I’m surprised they’re behind T-Mobile too.
7. Rivian Automotive – 11/9/21 – $11.93 Billion (NASDAQ)
The youngest company on the list (sorry for the spoiler), Rivian Automotive designs and manufactures electric vehicles and related items and services. With an IPO share price of $78 they raised close to $12 Billion. Their debut day on the market was remarkable as shares ended the day at $100.73 giving the company an astronomically high valuation of $86 Billion, which is more than Ford’s market cap at the time, which is one of Rivian’s main financial backers. Make sense? Well, no it doesn’t as todays Rivian’s shares are trading around $26 giving them a market cap around $24 Billion less than 35% of their opening day value.
6. Duetsche Telekom – 11/17/96 – $12.03 Billion (NYSE)
5. General Motors – 11/17/10 – $15.77 Billion (NYSE)
4. Facebook – 5/17/12 – $16.01 Billion (NASDAQ)
Although Facebook ranks #4 on the list, and still has the record for the largest IPO ever on the NASDAQ, the stock had a tumultuous debut day on the market following as shares dropped significantly on opening day and plummeted nearly 40% in the first several months. Part of the growing concern among investors came from the fact that 57% of the shares sold on the IPO day were from Facebook Insiders. Finding itself in the midst of numerous scandals and PR crisis’, Facebook (now META) has done fairly well for itself, some might say.
3. ENEL SpA – 11/1/99 – $16.45 Billion (NYSE)
2. VISA – 3/18/08 – $17.86 Billion (NYSE)
1. Alibaba – 9/18/14 – $21.76 Billion (NYSE)
Alibaba made the strategic decision to go public on the NYSE despite being the Chinese rival to Amazon. Not only did they do that, but they did it on the NYSE instead of the NASDAQ, which traditionally is used for tech companies. However, many believe they were skeptical over the handling of Facebook’s IPO on the NASDAQ. Since it’s IPO Alibaba has experienced tremendous exist and currently has a market capitalization of $278 Billion, ranking it the 25th most valuable company in the world by market capitalization.