Venture Firms Delay IPO Payouts, Prefer to File in Secret: Report

By Cameron Scott 

social media, social networks, facebook, twitter, googlePublic stock offerings of companies originally funded by venture capital investments dipped by more than half in the first quarter of 2013, and many expect the companies to wait until the end of the year to go public, according to a study from the National Venture Capital Association and Thomson Reuters.

Just eight venture-funded enterprises went public in the first quarter, bringing in $672 million. Six of the eight were technology companies.

With a dollar amount lower than any since 2008, NVCA says investment firms delayed public offerings due to uncertainty about tax policy and sequestration.

In the remainder of 2013, the pace of IPOs will likely pick up, according to the report.

“Quality companies tell us they are starting the process toward an exit later in the year,” said John Taylor, NVCA’s head of research.

Twenty-five companies have filed public paperwork for IPO with the SEC. But, according to the report many, or even most, companies will now submit the confidential registrations legalized through the JOBS Act, which became law last April.

Companies likely to go public within the next year or two include Twitter, Spotify, Square and GrubHub, according to Greencrest Capital.

Despite widespread pessimism about Facebook’s performance since its 2012 IPO, seven of the eight companies that went public in the first quarter of 2013 are now trading above their offering price.