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Google to delay IPO

reported in London Times

     

Kirby

1:24 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Schmidt says market timing isnt right. “An IPO is not on my agenda right now.”

[timesonline.co.uk...]

Shak

9:28 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member shak is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



superb find my friend...

lets see where this leads us.

Shak

mat

9:31 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Nice. This post should be linked to from every page of every rant about Florida/Austin.

[Edited for spelling]

glengara

10:06 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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"... have told Google to delay a flotation because the high-tech market is expected to continue its recent rise."

Would you base anything on what "lead underwriters and advisers" tell you about future high-tech movements?

percentages

11:15 am on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



It sounds like Google management don't have a clue what they are doing. Which is probably a little more of a clue than the journalists trying to cover the story have.

See: [iht.com...]

This is no way to run a dance, and isn't going to do Google any favors when they actually make up their minds which way is up.

Brett_Tabke

2:53 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Well that is a bummer!

They must be reading different market conditions than the rest of us!?

Spring 2004 - Perfect. You'd have to be brain dead not to realize that "tech is back baby".
Ask jeeves just turned a profit -
Yahoo is turning into a merciless profit machine -
and even Microsoft is up.

We are in an upgrade cycle right now. Hardware is back, the web is mature, last year was awesome - this is going to be better.

Fall 2004!? Are you nuts!? During a Presidential election cycle!? No way dude.

Few would buy stock in a company marked for death by Microsoft. Google has the target on their chest.

Spring 2005!? Just in time for Longhorn and to compete head-to-head with Microsoft? Ya, that would be a real smart time to IPO.

What's that leave in the next year to year and a half?

defanjos

3:08 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Sure, wait for interest rates to go up and the stock market to tank, then do a tech IPO - pure genius.

Brett_Tabke

3:10 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



I sure don't get it. It is *PERFECT* timing for an IPO right now. They must be banking on a white house occupant change this fall.

mquarles

3:21 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I'm confused Brett. What impact would a change in the White House have on Google? Haven't seen a President yet that even understood technology :-).

MQ

corpuscle

3:23 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Perhaps the founders are just fed up of the investment bankers telling them how to run their business.

Perhaps they're worried that their recent activities, in terms of search results and litigations, are destroying the public's perception of their once wholesome brand.

Perhaps they want to focus on what they were loved for; providing good quality results, growing organically and symbiotically with the web itself, and enjoying the fruits of the respect this commanded.

adfree

3:30 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



IPO not on the agenda right now?

Must have been a stunning audit report then.

Let's see, what can you do with 650mio and change in the bank plus 1 billion or so in free cash flow:

- counter a hostile takeover attempt by Migranesoft for three days

- poker about market conditions to increase further and be topped by a dramatic election outcome (is Elvis back?)

___

- miss the opportunity to protect massive intellectual assets and the smartest employees on the planet (well, this one, don't really know what kind of different spirit and opportunity they find up there...) = priceless

Anyone in for another roller coaster ride in speculations and surprises in this crazy market...

donpps

3:37 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



From a recent article in Forbes, I think those guys have a little more "growing up" to do in terms of running an actual 800 lbs business. Once you cross that bridge (Public company) you know the world from main street to tech avenue will be watching and waiting.

It might be prudent for them to get all their ducks in a row..;)

Don

Chris_R

3:38 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Would you base anything on what "lead underwriters and advisers" tell you about future high-tech movements?

Very true. Almost every academic paper ever written has said you can't predict the stock market. You would think the zillion PhDs at Google would know this.

The statement isn't a denial. It isn't even really a statement. Google doesn't need to go public, but everything they have done so far [according to rumors in the press] have suggested they are headed towards an IPO this year.

Andy Bechtolsheim, one of Google's first investors, said in an interview yesterday that the profitable, privately held company now has so many shareholders, including about 1,000 employees with stock options, that it is required by law to publicly disclose its financial results by next spring. Forced to pull back the curtain on its performance no later than April, Google officials decided to cash in on their success by selling stock to investors, he said.

[bizreport.com...]

Andy Bechtolsheim should know what he is talking about. That report was back in October - so either:

1) Google has changed their mind
2) Andy Bechtolsheim was wrong
3) The report about Andy Bechtolsheim was wrong
4) The report about Schmidt was wrong or is being misinterpreted.

I tend to think it is #4, but I have no way of knowing of course. If they are going to go public - this may be their last chance to REALLY cash in. They don't have to go public, but google isn't likely to ever gain have the penetration it could show with last years figures. There are other ways for growth, but google will have to work much harder to get them.

Chndru

3:38 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

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*me am shuts my ears on all this rumur-journalism..*

Is that comment mentioned in the post#1 official?

Has any official word has been out from Google on their IPO?

Chris_R

3:42 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Has any official word has been out from Google on their IPO?

No - google has made several comments at conventions and the like, but nothing official - and nothing other than saying more or less "we are taking our time and aren't in a hurry."

Yidaki

4:25 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



>Google Gets Cold Feet

Sounds negative - implies google could be coward which is irrelevant.

>It is *PERFECT* timing for an IPO right now

Maybe Sergey and Larry finally remembered the other bubbles and took back their right to decide themself - maybe they realized that an IPO puts too much pressure on them. Me, i would never IPO with a company that already drives that much profit ... no matter what timing.

Kirby

4:35 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



>They must be reading different market conditions than the rest of us!?

Spring 2004 - Perfect. You'd have to be brain dead not to realize that "tech is back baby".
Ask jeeves just turned a profit -
Yahoo is turning into a merciless profit machine -
and even Microsoft is up.

Brett, you forgot Amazon. They just posted their first annual profit- [msnbc.msn.com...]

finer9

4:43 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Doubleclick just reported strong earnings too, which is probably most relevant to Google's fortunes.

There is no question tech and the market is back...but if the investment bankers expect it to keep growing, then it benefits all of them to wait.

Wait 6 months, get an additional $1B in market cap, and more fees in the bankers pockets? Sounds fine to me. Why should they rush?

dirkz

4:44 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Perhaps their feet were getting cold because of a threatening MS takeover.

Or they are just waiting for Yahoo and MS to move.

Kirby

5:10 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Two friends of mine are ex-Wall Street investment company management big shots that are critical of google at the moment. The excitement of the IPO in their circles is tempered by the recent press about the rumblings of Google's search quality, the changes in the competitive landscape and the underlining concern that Google doesnt quite have a handle on things. Of course you'll get a different perspective from bankers who are in for a share of the fees.

My opinion is that they want either 1) Yahoo to get on with their switch and then have a clearer picture of life after Yahoo, or 2) they feel they do have a search quality problem and are still looking for a fix or 3)the rumored talks with M$ were more than rumors and the IPO threat is leverage.

Brett_Tabke

5:13 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



>can't predict the stock market.

That's less than half the picture. The rest of it is reading the tech market. It is primed right now.

Tech/Net expansion - dead ahead:

The next big push will be around longhorn. Look, the last big push was Windows 95. Gateway, Dell, Microsoft, and Intel all made out like bandits on the playground. Much of that hard ware and minor upgrades is out there - just sitting and waiting for an excuse to upgrade. There are offices still running on p2-133's that I know of. That isn't an exception - there is a ton of old hardware out there.
People and businesses have been content to put money into digital cameras, top notch printers, laptops, and lcd screens. But basic expansion of the platform? Hasn't really happened in mass numbers since 95.

So, we know that historically, there is nothing like a huge OS release from Microsoft to drive computer hardware sales, that drive computer software sales, that drive web viewing, that drives ecommerce, that drives a search engine!
We are also on the verge of another round of upgrades from Intel. The 3ghz, 1terra byte hd, an LCD, and 4gig ram looks to be doable as the standard PC for 2005. That means a whole lot of new hardware and top notch software coming out soon for the future.

So, I'll grant that another big tech expansion looms on the 2005-2006 horizon due to longhorn. Unfortunatly, all that love that could be shown to Google is going out the window on the heals of microsofts stated intention of rolling search into the OS. EG: 2005 is high noon for Google vs Microsoft. Hey, I am no MS fan, but you'd have to be drunk to buy Google stock in the face of a Bill Gates whim.
Also, Yahoo is getting it's sea legs back. They've have come out of the fog and now look to have a clear vision for their future.

The "Google shine" is bound to get a bit better than it is right now, but for the past 3 months, it has been open season on the Google image. The Google Teflon turned out to be pretty thin afterall.

Wildcards:
Regime change: Without getting into a political debate (god help us), a party change in dc could dramtically affect tech.
Legal: There is still the Overture vs Google patent law suit setting out there. (no we've not forgotten). There is also a great deal of law to be made yet around trademarks and keyword advertising.
Foo: There could be a bunch of things occuring behind the scenes that we just can't know about it. eg: the emperor really could be naked, and the wizard may be a fat bald guy behind a curtain.

Kirby

5:47 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



>Regime change: Without getting into a political debate (god help us), a party change in dc could dramtically effect tech.

Without getting into a political debate, I would love to hear your views on this. Which forum is appropriate?

rogerd

5:51 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator rogerd is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Waiting for higher tech valuations seems counterproductive in Google's case. It seems to me that demand is high enough that reining in expectations to a reasonable valuation would be the order of the day. Do they want to push the PE ratio from 150 to 300? For most businesses, an under-priced IPO is a real concern - I don't think that would be the case for Google, not at the moment, anyway.

WebFusion

5:59 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



It sounds like Google management don't have a clue what they are doing

Right...that's why they're one of the only profitable, virtually debt-free search engine companies in existence.

With a balnce sheet like google's, you can afford to wait as long as you want.

The only people who are probably REALLY upset about this are the employees with tons of stock options.

mayor

6:03 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



>> what "lead underwriters and advisers" tell you

Were they the ones that advised CGMI to hold off on taking Alta Vista public during the last dot com boom?

Well, the rational investment world is probably already starting to discount Google for the debut of Microsoft's search so the best thing now may be to hope for another tech stock bubble ... a feeding frenzy where the portfolio lemmings put their blinders on.

Go60Guy

6:04 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Also, in terms of timing, lets not forget that Amazon has climbed from a low of about $8 into the 50s, and just turned an annual profit.

Shak

6:21 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member shak is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



$5,000 says IPO happens before September 1st 2004.

Shak

robertito62

6:30 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



> That's less than half the picture. The rest of it is reading the tech market. It is primed right now.

If the market has topped, which seems likely, NAS might touch the upper 1500 6 months down the road... It looks like they have missed the top and have been advised by their wallstreet nannies to postpone their plans.

Blame it on market conditions > translation: there won't be enough suckers around in a month or two.

Had the IPO occurred, it would have crowned the top anyway. The Fed unexpectedly anticipated them yesterday. Or someone thinks the news release today, one day after the change in wording in the Fed minutes, is JUST a coincidence?

So cynical.

[edited by: robertito62 at 6:33 pm (utc) on Jan. 29, 2004]

robertito62

6:32 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I bet a case of cuban cohibas robustos (about 15) instead of the 5,000 that IPO goes to 2005.

Nas won't allow for such an IPO this year. They have just missed it. Nas year's end: 1650

Shak

6:34 pm on Jan 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member shak is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



I bet a case of cuban cohibas robustos (about 15) instead of the 5,000 that IPO goes to 2005.

maybe Brett wants to start a seperate thread about this, sure be some winnings for webmasterworld either way, and just in time for Pubconference London in the autumn of 2004.

Shak

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