When Google enters your market, everything changes. The company has incredible muscle (and other resources), so you can’t just ignore it. For this reason, Kayak amended its IPO filing. The online travel search company was responding to Google’s acquisition of ITA Software.
Kayak filed to go public 10 months ago, reports Forbes, and it has done nothing since then. Had it pulled its filing months ago – because of market conditions or any other reason – the company would have had nothing to worry about. Now, pulling the company out of the pipeline would make it look like Google can drive a solid company out of public markets.
If you’re going to file for an IPO and a massive exogenous event occurs, it’s OK to pull the filing. What it’s not OK to do, however, is just sit there and let the filing fester.
Had Kayak yanked the offering when Google announced the acquisition of ITA, the situation wouldn’t have been so bad. Kayak could come back later ‘with a story about how it had analysed the threat, responded to it and become ready to move forward.’ Now, Kayak is ‘stuck in registration no-man’s land: Weaker financials than when it filed — in terms of net income — in a market where even the strongest registrants are reluctant to price. Google may have caused many of Kayak’s IPO problems, but at least one of them was self-inflicted.’
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