On January 31, 2014, 16-year-old dot-com darling Coupons.com filed for an IPO. To put this event in perspective, PayPal was founded in the same year. While PayPal filed for its $70 million IPO in 2002 and received an acquisition offer of $1.5 billion from eBay later that year, Coupons.com made the decision to remain private. In general, the average company takes six to seven years to reach IPO readiness. Sixteen years is rare.
Strike When the Iron Is Hot
When 4-year-old PayPal filed for an IPO, its trailing 12 months revenue was $138 million, while 16-year-old Coupons.com had trailing 12 months revenue of approximately $153 million at filing. One could argue that Coupons.com did not have strong enough revenue growth to warrant an IPO in 2002. I would tend to agree with this. If Coupons.com revenue growth of 50 percent, as evidenced in its S-1 filing, has been consistent, it's fair to reason that they may have had less than $5 million in revenue in 2001.
The Long and Winding RoadRead More »from Anatomy of an IPO