BLP’s Rearview Mirror: Earnings, IPOs, M&A and Private Placements for the Week Ending November 17th

What’s Happenin’?

Week Ending November 17th

Source: Yahoo Finance

The big news is the NASDAQ Composite (^IXIC) is poised to cross over 4,000 for the first time since September, 2000.  The index has rallied 32 percent this year, outpacing the Dow and the S&P 500.[1]


Wal-Mart  (WMT:  NYSE) reported earnings of $1.14 per share, a 6.5 percent increase from last year’s $1.07 per share.  Net sales were $1.14b, up 1.6 percent.  It doesn’t look like retailers are having a good Christmas this year.

Nordstrom (JWN:  NYSE ) profit fell to $137m, or 69 cents from $146m a year ago..  Sales were $2.88b vs. $2.81b a year ago.  Another “Blah!” Report.

The only good news appears to be Applied Materials (AMAT:  Nasdaq), the mighty semiconductor equipment manufacturer, which swung to a profit of $183m, or 15 cents, from a loss of $515m or 42 cents per share a year ago.


Medical Related

Tandem Diabetes Care (TNDM:  Nasdaq) sold 8.0 million shares at $15 per share, the high end of the range, raising $120 million.  The valuation was $308m.  The Company developed the t:slim Insulin Delivery System.  The insulin management system has the look and feel of a smartphone; the PC is a management console.  The stock closed the week at $21.84, 46 percent over the IPO price.

Relypsa (RLYP:  Nasdaq), which is a pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of non-absorbed polymeric drugs to treat disorders in the areas of renal, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, sold 6.9 million shares at $11 per share, below the expected price of $12 per share.  The Company raised $75m at a valuation of $315m.  The stock closed the week at $12.07 per share.

Consumer Products

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, (HMHC:  Nasdaq) which was an LBO, sold 18.3 million shares at $12 per share, which was below the range of $14 to $16 per share, raising $220 million.  The valuation was $1.67b; the stock closed at $16.11 per share, 34 percent above the IPO price.

zulily (ZU:  NYSE), which runs an ecommerce site targeting mothers of small children, principally with colorful and cute children’s clothing and accessories, sold 11.5m shares at $22 per share, raising $253m at a $2.68m valuation.  The stock closed the week at $37.70, a 71 percent increase over the IPO price.

Mergers & Acquisitions

ViroPharma, which develops proprietary antiviral pharmaceuticals for the treatment of viral diseases, was acquired by Shire for $4.2b.

Managed communications and media services provider for businesses, GTS Central Europe was acquired by Deutsche Telekom for $546m.

MapMyFitness , a website and an app, was acquired by Under Armour for $150m.

LATISTA, which develops secure, cloud-based web and mobile software that delivers a complete field management solution, was acquired by Textura, which is a leading provider of collaboration solutions for the construction industry, for $35m.

Curbed Network, which provides intelligence on daily activities to urban audiences, was acquired by Vox Media for $30m.

Norwalk-based, Circle One Marketing, an ad agency whose methods span from traditional to social, was acquired by Match Marketing Group, which has a multidisciplinary approach to marketing.

Fiberlink , which focuses on enterprise mobility management, was acquired by IBM.

Kno, an e-textbook provider, was acquired by Intel.

Sky Motion, which does “now-casting” based on your exact location as opposed to weather casting, was acquired b AccuWeather.

TouristEye, which will plan your trip in seconds, was acquired by Lonely Planet Travel.

Private Placements

Redfin, a real estate company that combines online and traditional methods of operation, raised $50 million Series F round. Redfin has listings on the East and West coasts, Texas, Nevada, Arizona and Colorado.

CustomInk raised a $40m venture round.  CustomInk makes custom t-shirts and other personalized items for groups.  But $40 million for a t-shirt company?  What’s the secret sauce?  I will admit to liking their product selection:  more than just t-shirts. And I do like their design page.  Click and move the already-drawn designs to create your shirt. raised $38m.  True to its name it will “Automate your Payables, Receivables and Cash Flow.”

BrightTag, which claims to be one of the world’s leading marketing platforms raised $27, Series D round.  BrightTag powers more than 1,000 brands and agencies. BrightTag empowers its clients to collect, connect and act on cross-channel customer data in real time, from websites and beyond – including mobile, social, email, ads, point-of-sale, CRM, call center, kiosks and more.[3]

Based in Santa Monica, The Honest Company raised a $25m Series B round.  The Honest Company provides “stylish, eco-friendly baby diapers, wipes, bath and body care products and non-toxic cleaning products.”

CreativeLIVE, raised a $22m Series B round. The Company provides online workshops in photography, video, design, business, audio, music and software training.

Sungy Mobile, which provides applications and mobile platform development products and services, raised a $20m venture round.   The Company is based in Gangzhou, China.

TinyCo, “a mobile gaming powerhouse,” raised a $20m Series B round.  TinCo is the company behind Tiny Monsters, Tiny Village and Tiny Zoo Friends.

FoundationDB, “a distributed database that practically operates itself,” raised a $17m, Series A round.

LendUp, raised $14m for a lending platform.  It appears to be a different type of lender, targeting people who take out “Payday loans.”  LendUp claims that your interest rate will decrease as you prove your credit worthiness.  Gotta believe it’s cheaper than American Express and Visa’s 28 percent interest rates.

Arrayent, a platform for connected products, raised a $12m Series-B round.  The Company develops and sells a “cloud and embedded platform for connected devices that enables manufacturers, retailer and service providers to connect consumer products to web and smartphone application.”[Which means what?]

Bitcasa raised an $11m venture round.  The Company bills itself as providing an “Infinite Drive” which allows you to store, access and share everything you’ve ever owned.  No need to own physical storage ever again!

Kidaptive raised a $10m Series B round.  Kidaptive is an innovative education and technology company dedicated to smart storytelling on iPads.

Margaret Johns

Founder & Chairman

Content researched, edited and reviewed on a best efforts basis.

 We make no claim to being comprehensive in our review, as the contents are companies and topics we, ourselves, find of interest.

This newsletter is currently being proofed by Dave Henshaw, which is much appreciated. Dave is my USMS swimming lane mate, and Granite State Penguin team-mate.  He is retired from MIT, where he used to produce and proof their annual financial report.  Exactly what we need. 

[1] Wall Street Journal Moneybeat.

[2] Certain information provided by Renaissance Capital, in addition to the SEC and numerous business publications