E-Commerce Developer ChannelAdvisor's Shares Soar in Debut

Scot Wingo
Source: Channel Advisors | Facebook
Scot Wingo

Shares of cloud-based e-commerce software provider ChannelAdvisor soared in their debut Thursday, as enterprise software makers continue to draw investor attention with their strong revenue models.

The company's shares opened up 25 percent, after its initial public offering of 5.8 million shares was priced at $14 per share, the high end of the pricing range. They touched an intraday high of $19.46, valuing the company at about $400 million. (For the latest stock price, click here.)

ChannelAdvisor, founded in 2001, helps companies sell their merchandise across online channels such as Amazon.com, Google, eBay and Facebook.

The Morrisville, N.C., company, whose competitors include Mercent, intends to use the proceeds to expand its international operations and sales and marketing capabilities.

Some of its largest customers include Ann Taylor, eBags.com, J&R Electronics and Jos. A. Bank Clothiers.

Investment firms Kodiak Venture Partners, Advance Technology Ventures and New Enterprise Associates own about two-thirds of ChannelAdvisor.

Last week, data analysis software maker Tableau Software saw its shares jump as much as 68 percent in its trading debut on rising interest in big data.

Shares of business software companies such as WorkDay, Guidewire Software and ServiceNow also are trading well above their IPO prices.

Enterprise companies, which sell services to businesses rather than individuals, have risen 37 percent, on average, in the two years since their IPOs, compared with 13 percent for consumer companies, according to market data firm Ipreo.

The companies are being buoyed by new technologies like mobile and "cloud" computing, trends that are creating tremendous business opportunities for young enterprise firms, investors said, leading them to grab market share from incumbents like Oracle and SAP.

One of the biggest reasons for the enthusiasm involves the cloud, or the ability to access data on the Internet from remote servers rather than from computers in-house—and the savings and flexibility that come with it.

Goldman Sachs and Stifel Nicolaus are the lead underwriters on the offering.

_By Reuters