IPO Window Opens Up

The drought is over.

That’s the most obvious takeaway from November’s IPO market activity levels. Six venture-backed companies launched offerings in the first three weeks of the month, raising just over $1.15 billion. That’s up from two VC-backed IPOs in October: Ubiquiti Networks and Zeltiq Aesthetics.

By far the most notable recent IPO is Groupon(Nasdaq: GRPN) which pulled off one of the biggest Internet public offerings in years on Nov. 4, when it raised more than $700 million, despite many investors’ doubts regarding the sustainability of the company’s fast-growing, money-losing daily deals business.

Groupon priced the IPO at $20 per share, above the proposed $16 to $18 range, with shares hitting a high of $31 before dipping in later trading. As of late November, shares were trading at about $24, with a market capitalization of about $15 billion.

Its largest venture backers are New Enterprise Associates (14.6% pre-IPO stake) and Accel Partners (5.5%).

Another Midwest-based Internet company, service provider review site Angie’s List, also made its debut in November. The Indianapolis-based company, which provides consumer reviews of local professionals and businesses, had priced its offering at $13 per share, the high end of its expected range of $11 to $13 a share. The company’s largest backers include Battery Ventures (18.2% pre-IPO stake), BV Capital (11.6%) and T. Rowe Price (9.8%).

Health care companies also saw an opening of the IPO window, with two offerings from developers of cancer drugs in November. NewLink Genetics, an Ames, Iowa-based developer of cancer drugs, raised $43.4 million in its debut on Nov. 11.

Five days later, Boulder-based Clovis Oncologycarried out a much larger offering, raising $130 million that it will use to develop and commercialize anti-cancer agents. Notably, one of the two venture-backed IPOs in October was also in the health care space: Zeltiq Aesthetics, a Pleasanton, Calif.-based developer of a non-invasive fat reduction procedure, raise $91 million in an offering that priced slightly below the projected range.

Technology companies weren’t left out either. Imperva, a Redwood City, Calif.-based developer of data center security systems, raised $90 million in a Nov. 9 offering. Shareholders include Accel Partners (22% pre-IPO stake), U.S. Venture Partners (11.4%), Venrock (11.4%) and Greylock Partners (8%).

Invensense, a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based developer of motion processing technology for computer electronics, raised $75 million in a Nov. 16 offering. Shareholders include Artiman Ventures (22.4% pre-IPO stake), Partech International (22.3%), Sierra Ventures (8.8%) and Qualcomm (6.9%).

Ubiquiti Networks, a San Jose-based developer of broadband wireless networking products, raised $105 million in its Oct. 14 offering. Summit Partners owns a 27.66% pre-IPO stake.

Meanwhile, several venture-backed companies signaled their intention to go public in the next several months, with new registration statements, including:

Yelp, which offers online reviews of local businesses and services, filed in November for an initial public offering of up to $100 million Yelp’s backers include Bessemer Venture Partners ( 22.5% stake), Elevation Partners (22.4%) and Benchmark Capital (16.2%),

Synacor, a provider of hosting and authentication services for online content providers, filed to raise up to $75 million in an initial public offering. Shareholders include Walden International (23% stake), Crystal Internet Ventures (19.9%), Advance Capital Partners (14%), Intel Capital(10.4%) and North Atlantic Capital (7.1%).

ChemoCentryx, a Mountain View, Calif.-based developer of oral drugs for autoimmune diseases, inflammatory diseases and oncology, filed for a $69 million IPO. The company has raised over $155 million in VC funding from GlaxoSmithKline, OrbiMed Advisors, HBM BioVentures, Alta Partners, HealthCap and GIMV.

Cempra Pharmaceuticals, a Chapel Hill, N.C.-based developer of antibiotics to treat bacterial infectious diseases, filed for an $86.2 million IPO. It has raised over $78 million in funding from I. Wistar Morris III (18.7 pre-IPO stake), Intersouth Partners (18.2%), Aisling Capital (18.1%), Quaker BioVentures (17.7%), and Teachers’ Private Capital (6.7%).

Additionally, social gaming leader Zynga was also expected to go public after Thanksgiving, after VCJwent to press. in early November, the company updated its IPO regulatory filing, disclosing some executive and board changes. Brad Feld, managing director of early Zynga investor Foundry Group, is leaving the company board. Such a move is common before a company goes public.

The company could raise $1 billion in its IPO.

Joanna Glasner can be reached at joanna.glasner@thomsonreuters.com. She tweets at @jglasner.