Feeds

QXL scales down IPO expectations

We think it's worth a punt

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

Tim Jackson, the UK’s leading Net pundit and founder of QXL.com, has seen his putative paper fortune shrink from £127 million to as little as £32 million. Today, QXL, the UK’s biggest Net auction house, announced the price range for its IPO offering would be 180p to 205p per share, valuing the company at £212 million to £242 million. Two or three months ago, the PR spin doctors were talking up the value of QXL as high as £750 million, two or three weeks ago, the spinning revolved around the £350 million mark. The secret of the soaraway IPO is timing. And this ain’t running in favour of QXL, the UK’s biggest Net auction house, with a annual sales run-rate of just £12 million. It's got eBay, the uber-brand for online auctions, breathing down its neck and if that weren't enough, Fairmarket comes along with a mega-auction network, backed by Microsoft, and linking 100 sites. Worst of all, the froth is draining away from the UK’s few net stocks, so far as investors are concerned. Yesterday, Freeserve, the UK’s biggest pureplay Net company (in terms of market cap) fell below its issue price for the first time. Despite all this, QXL should be a successful float -- even if it gets less money to play with for marketing and expanding distribution overseas. Set up only in 1997, QXL is almost a textbook example of a VC-backed Net business. And unlike many, it’s got grown-up managers. Also, QXL's auction business is more defensible than the Freeserve's free ISP model. Costs are lower and competition is much less fierce in the auction market. Also, QXL's revenues are growing at 60-70 per cent per quarter, CEO Jim Rose said in an interview with

The Standard

, a rate that Freeserve is extremely unlikely to touch through organic means. We think QXL's worth a punt. At very worst, a company like eBay will come along and snap it up with its own stratospherically rated stock. Dealing in QXL.com shares is slated to begin on 7 October.®

Related storyIT big hitters to out-eBay eBay

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.