After a very quiet end to February, several high-profile deals should make the initial public offering (IPO) calendar for March 2013.
The year has gotten off to a great start with strong market performance by newly public companies. Overall there have been 20 IPOs so far this year and 17 are currently trading higher than the offering price.
March will see a slow but interesting start with just two deals coming to market in the first week of the month.
IPO Calendar March 2013
Professional Diversity Network (Nasdaq: IPDN): This small deal will be pricing March 6, coming to market with an offering of 1. 8 million shares and an expected price range of $10-12.
The company operates online networks aimed at very specific target audiences. Their biggest assets to date are the 1.2 million-member iHispano.com site known as "the Latino Professional Network," and the 600,000-member AMightyRiver.com professional networking Website for African Americans.
The company intends to use the offering's proceeds to expand its professional and recruitment networks to include women, the military, the LGBT community, Asian Americans and military veterans.
The bulk of the company's revenue in 2012 came from two relationships: 63% of revenue came from recruitment partnership with Monster Worldwide Inc. (NYSE: MWW) and 32% from the company's relationship with University of Phoenix parent company Apollo Group Inc. (Nasdaq: APOL).
Professional Diversity was highly dependent on Monster as it had an exclusive recruitment agreement with the company that expired at the end of 2012. Professional Diversity believes that by entering into a wider range of non-exclusive agreements for professional recruitment, it can expand revenue and profits going forward.
Professional Diversity has announced a new agreement with LinkedIn Corp (NYSE: LNKD). It allows LinkedIn to resell diversity-based recruiting ads placed on Professional Diversity Websites in return for a fixed fee and commissions. Although the fixed payments are half of what Monster Worldwide provided, the less exclusive nature of the agreements and commission arrangements allow for greater growth opportunities.
The company believes its business stands to benefit from several developing social trends. The Internet is becoming increasingly socialized and the use of networks in job search is becoming routine. There is also a strong push for more diverse workplaces and employers can use the sites to meet diversity goals in hiring.
There is also an established trend of faster spending growth among the company's targeted audiences that should benefit Professional Diversity's attempts to grow going forward.
Although this is a very small company with just over $5.5 million of revenue in 2012, they have been profitable every year since 2006. They serve what promises to be a rapidly growing market and have an early advantage over competitors.
Aegis Capital is the manager of the offering.
Artisan Partners Asset Management (NYSE: APAM): This company on March 7 will price 11.5 million shares between an expected range of $27 to $29 a share.
Artisan is an independent asset management firm that offers a wide range of investment products. At the end of 2012 it managed more than $74 billion of client assets. The company uses 12 different equity investment strategies, and 11 of the 12 have outperformed their relevant comparable indexes since inception.
Its fund management business accounts for 53% of the firm's assets under management.
About 47% of client assets are for clients such as pension funds, endowments and trusts. The firm also serves as the investment adviser to the Artisan Funds, an SEC-registered family of mutual funds. It also promotes Artisan Global, an Ireland-based manager of Undertakings for Collective Investment in Transferable Securities (UCITS) funds.
The deal is being co-managed by Goldman Sachs and Citigroup.