ALAMEDA, Calif. – Wink Communications Inc., a provider of an end-to-end system for low-cost electronic commerce on television, went public August 19, offering 4.75 million shares at $16 apiece. The company’s stock priced at the high end of its $14 to $16 filing range.
Underwritten by Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown and Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc., the initial public offering left 29 million shares outstanding.
Venture backers included Microsoft Corp., General Electric Capital Corp., General Instrument Corp., Toshiba Corp., Vulcan Ventures Inc., Benchmark Capital Partners, EGI-Wink Investors and SZ Investments. Selling stockholders collectively will sell $200,000 shares.
The company’s Wink Enhanced Broadcasting system allows advertisers, merchants, and broadcast and cable networks to create interactive enhancements to traditional television programs and advertisements. Viewers can purchase merchandise, request product samples, coupons or catalogues by clicking their remote control. Consumers also can use Wink to access program-related information, participate in votes and polls and play along with game shows.
The company plans to use the expected $66.8 million generated in the IPO for working capital and for other general corporate purposes, including expanding sales and marketing efforts, research and development and its viewer response network. Wink may also use a portion of the proceeds to fund revenue guarantees to industry participants and for possible acquisitions or investments in complementary products, businesses or technologies.
The company has never been profitable, losing $9.2 million in 1997 and $14 million in 1998.
Hidetaka Yamamoto, a general manager of New Business Development at Toshiba’s Information and Industrial Systems Co., joined the company’s board of directors in February 1995. Bruce Dunlevie, founder and managing member of Benchmark Capital, followed in March 1996. Jeffrey Coats, former managing director of GE Capital Equity Capital Group Inc. and GE Capital Corporate Finance Group Inc., joined the board in June 1997, followed shortly by F. Philip Handy, former managing director of EGI Corporate Investments.
Compiled by Alissa Leibowitz
Wink Communications – Selected Financial
(in thousands, except per share data)
Year Ended December 31 Six Months Ended June 30
1995 1996 1997 1998 1998 1999
Total revenue 100 348 619 517 290 620
Net loss -2,148 -5,884 -9,166 -14,036 -5,777 -9,201
Net loss per share -0.37 -0.91 -1.25 -1.57 -0.66 -0.92