BrokerDealers Eye On The Next Bitcoin IPO: Secretive Firm Backed By Best and Brightest

Bitcoin blog update profiles the $116 million raised over multiple fundraising rounds by bitcoin starup 21 Inc. While the startup is planning to use the funds to create top secret products that no one knows much about, brokerdealers anticipate the launch of the next bitcoin IPO. The update comes from CoinDesk’s Joon Ian Wong’s 10 March article “Bitcoin Startup 21 Announces $116 Million All-Star Backing blog has done extensive coverage of the emerging bitcoin market. Just last month a New York City public official proposed accepting bitcoins as a form of payment for fines and fees, while the Winklevoss twins prepare to launch a bitcoin ETF.

Stealth bitcoin startup 21 Inc, formerly 21e6, has announced new information about its funding history, staff members and investors, revealing it has raised $116m in fundraising over multiple rounds.

In a new interview with the Wall Street Journal, 21 CEO Matthew Pauker indicated that Andreessen Horowitz, Data Collective, Khosla Ventures, RRE Ventures and Yuan Capital are among the firms that have participated in the company’s funding rounds.

Dropbox CEO Drew Houston; eBay co-founder Jeff Skoll; Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi; PayPal co-founders Peter Thiel and Max Levchin; and Zynga co-founder Mark Pincus have also invested in the startup.

Perhaps most notable is the involvement of Qualcomm Ventures, the venture capital subsidiary of the global semiconductor company that designs and markets wireless telecommunication products.

Pauker told the news source that 21 aims to leverage Qualcomm’s production capabilities to develop a suite of undisclosed products to be released in the coming months.

Co-founder Balaji Srinivasan, a partner at VC firm Andreessen Horowitz, compared the ambitions of the project to the development of 56-kilobit Internet modems and wireless Internet towers, suggesting a long-term vision that helps bring bitcoin to consumer households.

The figure would top the $106.7m raised by Coinbase to date through its four public funding rounds. 21 raised $5m in venture capital in 2013 as 21e6.

For the entire article from CoinDesk, click here.

A Handmade IPO for Bankers, BrokerDealers and Maybe Investors

etsy ipo blog IPO update and profile of pending initial public offering is courtesy of extract from 5 March story by Bloomberg View’s Matt Levine, “The Etsy IPO and the Triangle Document.” Brokerdealers and bankers alike have been anticipating Etsy’s IPO launch as it could be a big test for companies that have growing businesses and devoted followings and are considering launching their own IPOs. Etsy is a peer-to-peer e-commerce website focused on handmade or vintage items and supplies, as well as unique factory-manufactured items. Now from Bloomberg View’s Matt Levine…

How twee.

You occasionally read about banks’ pitches to take hot companies public, and they are often cringe-worthy: Bankers wore band t-shirts to pitch Pandora, and UBS dressed “around 75 of its employees in Lululemon gear and had them descend upon Central Park for a ‘flash mob’ yoga session” to pitch Lululemon for some reason. What do you think Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Allen & Company did to win the Etsy initial public offering? Did they hand-write the pitchbooks in fountain pen? Crochet them? Or just produce them normally in PowerPoint on their computers, but they were wooden computers? Did everyone else know about this?

The company was founded by Rob Kalin, a carpenter making handmade wooden computers with nowhere to sell them.

So obviously the Internet beckoned. Anyway, Etsy filed its preliminary prospectus yesterday, without a lot of capitalization numbers; Bloomberg reports that it’s seeking to sell about $300 million of stock, while DealBook estimates its pre-money valuation at about $322 million, so, that’s kind of weird. Use of proceeds is “general corporate purposes,” as one does, plus putting $300,000 — 10 basis points of the deal? — into the company’s nonprofit. But unlike a bunch of the internetty companies that I make fun of for going public for no particular reason other than cashing out insiders, Etsy is growing, had a $15.2 million net loss last year, and could probably use the money. (It’s also cashing out some insiders obviously.) The filing also emphasizes “authenticity” and includes this graphic explaining why Etsy works:

To continue reading Matt Levine’s article from Bloomberg View, please click here

Residential Real-Estate & Commercial Builder IPOs: BrokerDealers and Investors Balancing New Home Builders v. Single-Building blog update profiles divergence between IPO opportunities for new home builders v. a new trend among commercial real estate developers raising capital in the initial public offering market for specific projects.

ipoAs best illustrated by 2 side-by-side articles in Nov 19 Wall Street Journal, broker-dealers and investment bankers are cautioning that the door on home builders wanting to good public is closing, as higher mortgage rates and tight mortgage-qualification standards continue to dampen the residential developer IPO space, not to mention in that home-builder stocks have slumped. Given the deluge in the overall U.S. IPO market, residential real estate developers are being pushed into the woodshed, at least for now. The full story on this topic is at the WSJ.

The better news for bankers and Issuers can be found in the nascent stage interest for “single-building” IPOs. Leading the pack is a New York start-up ETRE Financial LLC, which plans to bring this novel structure to the capital markets early next year. The building that will be floated is the State Street Financial Center, the Boston office tower owned by a venture led by Fortis Property Group.

According to reporting by WSJ staffers Eliot Brown and Robbie Whelan, the structure proposed by ETRE is somewhat complex, yet ETRE co-founder Jesse Stein states, “By providing investors with the opportunity to invest in a single asset, you’re actually increasing the opportunity to diversify.”