While companies like Uber are arguing to stay private for as long as they can, investor and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is taking the opposite approach.
He’s arguing to his companies that it’s worth the hassle to go public, he said in a “Closing Bell” interview on CNBC.
In 2015, many tech companies that went public didn’t see many positive results. There’s been a “down mood” around tech stocks Cuban argues because they are all companies that waited too long to go public.
The market used to be able to capitalise on the the hypergrowth of a company going public early and that’s not happening anymore, he says.
“Companies are waiting seven, nine, 10 years or longer to go public, and their hypergrowth is typically gone,” Cuban said. “And so that’s why you’re seeing a lot of IPOs underperform.”
He’s working to push his companies to go public early, instead of following the Uber path of wanting to stay private forever.
“It’s something we have to work at. That when we hit 50 or $100 million in sales, and we think we can be a 500 or $750 million revenue and 10% net profit company, let’s go public early,” Cuban says.
The lack of exciting hypergrowth companies going public also gives bigger companies the advantage to swoop in and acquire smaller upstarts looking for capital. Cuban argued that’s what happened with Facebook buying Instagram and Oculus. There’s diminished incentives for companies to invest in their own R&D and fight it out with the upstarts.
“Because the problem is there’s aren’t exciting growth companies coming and there’s a reduction in competition for big companies because all those big companies have to do is sit back and wait and buy all these upstarts that are doing well,” Cuban said. “Look at Facebook with Instagram and Oculus. In the past, those companies would have gone public…”