But the past two days were highly, insanely, ludicrously profitable for the company's backers, as stock in Beyond Meat shot up nearly 200% from its IPO price and investors swarmed in pursuit of a piece of that sweet, sweet meatless meat. That sort of spike is rare. But it also aligns with the post-IPO performance of the rest of 2019's unicorn herd.
So far this year, when unicorns go public, they tend to get more valuable—and that's one of nine things you need to know from the past week:
1. To infinity for BeyondThe first hints that something might be brewing emerged earlier in the week, when Beyond Meat elevated its original IPO price range. The company priced at $25 per share, at the top of its revised range. And then everything went crazy: Stock in Beyond Meat (NASDAQ: BYND) opened Thursday trading at $46 per share, closed at $65.75, and then inched up even higher on Friday, finishing the week at $66.79. That equates to a market cap of $3.8 billion, compared to a $1.5 billion IPO valuation and a $1.35 billion figure with its last round of VC.
There's probably nobody happier about it all than the folks at Kleiner Perkins: The firm owned a 15.9% pre-IPO stake in Beyond Meat, holding shares now worth well over $500 million.
Recent weeks, of course, have been peppered with unicorn IPOs. For the most part, once these companies have gone public, they've been out of mind; the main exception might be Lyft, whose slipping stock price has caused cries of concern about Uber's eventual fate. But for the rest of the cohort, the move to the public markets has been accompanied with steadily rising stock prices.
IT software provider PagerDuty went public on April 11 with an IPO price of $24 per share, valuing the company at $1.8 billion. Its stock shot up nearly 60% on its first day of trading, closing at $38.25 per share, and has continued to tick up in the weeks since. Shares in the company closed Friday at $46.52 per piece, for a market cap of $3.4 billion, compared to $1.3 billion with its last VC round.
Social media unicorn Pinterest debuted a week later, pricing its IPO at $19 per share—above its expected range—to establish a $10 billion valuation, notably less than its prior $12.3 billion VC-backed valuation. But Pinterest stock closed its first day trading up at $24.40 per share, and it closed Friday at $28.36, for a market cap of about $15 billion.
The prime example of the trend might be Zoom, which joined Pinterest in going public on April 18. After pricing above its anticipated range at $36 per share, the company's stock zoomed (sorry) to $62 by the end of its first day, representing a valuation increase from $9.2 billion to nearly $16 billion in mere hours. Zoom's stock closed Friday at $79.18, valuing the workplace video company at almost $20 billion.
The performance of these stocks and the rest of the unicorns on their way to the public markets will of course be worth monitoring in the weeks, months and years to come. The early results, though, must have some of the longtime investors in those unicorns asking: What took you so long?