A public offering of stock can vary from $500,000 to over $1 billion. In 1999, 544 companies completed an IPO(Initial Public Offering). The total capital raised from these offerings was $23.6 billion. By offering stock for sale to the public a company can access a substantial source of corporate funding.
If a company needs to raise capital, it can sell stock(equity) or it can it issue bonds(debt securities). An initial equity offering can bring immediate proceeds to a company. These funds may be used for a variety of purposes including; growth and expansion, retiring existing debt, corporate marketing and development, acquisition capital and corporate diversity.
Once public, a company's financing alternatives are increased. A publicly traded company can return to the public markets for additional capital via a bond or convertible bond issue or secondary equity offering. A public status can also provide favorable terms for alternative financing from public and private investors.
In general, public companies have a higher valuation than private enterprises.
To sell the stock of a private company, a stockholder must find another individual that is interested in owning the shares. This is very difficult, especially for minority positions.
By going public, a company creates a market for its stock in which buyers and sellers participate. In general, stock in a public company is much more liquid than stock in a private enterprise. Liquidity is created for the investors, institutions, founders, owners and venture capital professionals. Investors of the company may be able to buy or sell the stock more readily upon completion of the public offering.
This liquidity can elevate the value of the corporation. The stock's liquidity is contingent on a variety of factors including, registration rights, lock-up restrictions and holding periods. A public company has greater opportunity to sell shares of stock to investors. Ownership of stock in a... [continues]
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