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191 companies had their IPO (initial public offering) in 2018, raising a total of $47.2 billion. This was similar to the 195 IPOs in 2017, but was a significant increase from the 98 IPOs in 2016. While 2018 was a strong year for IPOs, it did not match the peak years of 2014 and 2013, with 273 IPOs and 222 IPOs, respectively.

IPOs provide companies with an opportunity to raise capital and expand their business, while also providing investors with an opportunity to invest in promising companies. 2018’s number of IPOs reflected a continuing interest and excitement around new, innovative companies going public, especially tech companies, consumer brands and financial firms.

The Biggest IPOs of 2018:

  • Spotify Technology S.A. (SPOT) - $26.54 billion
  • SoftBank Group Corp. (SFTBY) - $23.5 billion
  • China Tower Corp. Ltd. (CHWRF) - $7.5 billion
  • Xiaomi Corp. (XIACY) - $4.7 billion
  • Meituan-Dianping (MPNGY) - $4.2 billion
  • AXA Equitable Holdings, Inc. (EQH) - $2.7 billion
  • PagSeguro Digital Ltd. (PAGS) - $2.27 billion
  • iQiyi, Inc. (IQ) - $2.25 billion
  • Pinduoduo Inc. (PDD) - $1.6 billion
  • Elanco Animal Health Inc. (ELAN) - $1.5 billion

The Biggest U.S. VC-backed IPOs of 2018:

  • PagSeguro Digital Ltd. (PAGS) - $2.6 billion
  • StoneCo Ltd. (STNE) - $1.4 billion
  • Domo Inc. (DOMO) - $690 million
  • DocuSign Inc. (DOCU) - $629 million
  • Dropbox Inc. (DBX) - $756 million
  • Zuora Inc. (ZUO) - $154 million
  • Pivotal Software Inc. (PVTL) - $555 million
  • Bloom Energy Corp. (BE) - $270 million
  • Carbon Black Inc. (CBLK) - $152 million
  • Eventbrite Inc. (EB) - $230 million

2018 Notables

Spotify Technology, the music streaming giant and biggest IPO of 2018, opted for a direct listing instead of the traditional IPO process. This stock has been volatile since, and as of mid-2022, the company has been trading below its IPO price.
Biopharmaceutical company Moderna, however, has become more popular since its IPO, as it became a household name for developing a vaccine during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Other notable companies that went public in 2018 include Dropbox, DocuSign, Eventbrite and BJ’s Wholesale Club, all with varying degrees of success. SoftBank, another company that went public in 2018, was one of the top 10 global IPOs by capital raised as of 2022.
Ultimately the largest IPOs by capital raised were, as listed below, some of the best performers of that year, suggesting their ongoing successful performance.

These included:

  • Moderna
  • AXA Equitable Holdings, Inc.
  • PagSeguro Digital Ltd.
  • iQiyi, Inc.
  • Pinduoduo Inc.
  • Elanco Animal Health Inc.
  • BJ’s Wholesale Club

A Summary of the 2018 IPOs

2018 was a year with many notable companies going public, providing both themselves and investors with opportunities to raise capital and grow. Many of the companies that strove to raise money and drive growth in 2018 by having their IPOs continue to be successful, even years later as we go into 2024.

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