A look back at 2020 Philly-area Tech IPOs

Tom Paine

It was a busy year for IPOs, nationally and locally. There were five Philly-area IPOs, inckluding one from Allentown (Shift4 Payments) and one from Princeton (Certara).

The most notable thing is that all five IPOs were very successful, with increases ranging from 47% to 228% from their initial offering prices until the end of the year.

In addition, Megalith Financial Acquisition Corp. which did an IPO in 2018 as a SPAC (special purpose acquisition corporation), merged with BankMobile Technologies (consisting of West Reading-based BankMobile, a subsidiary of Customers Bancorp). The merger closed on January 4,2021.

On January 12, Lawrenceville NJ-based BTRS Holdings Inc. (“Billtrust”), a B2B accounts receivable automation and integrated B2B payments leader, and South Mountain Merger Corp. (“South Mountain”), a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), completed their planned business combination. BTRS is now trading on the Nasdaq at a market value of $2.4 billion.

Looking further ahead into 2021, I’m curious about whether goPuff will go public. Softbank, its primary owner, is likely eager to follow up with its success with the recent DoorDash offering. goPuff probably doesn’t need to be profitable if it can demonstrate pro forma profitability (or progress towards) in its more mature markets.

Also, Dresher PA-based Ascensus, a retirement plan manager, has already hired bankers for the purpose of preparing for an IPO in mid- 2021. Ascensus has built scale through a series of acquisitions. The IPO could value the company in the $3 billion range.

Ascensus has been investing in its technology offerings, and had planned to roll out a new digital sales platform before the end of the 2020.

I’ll post another item on. biotech IPOs.

Philly Area 2020 Tech IPOs
What It DoesLocationSymbolIPO DateIPO PriceCurrent PricePCT ChangeMarket Value
CertaraBiosim SoftwarePrincetonCERT12/11$23$33.7246.60%$5.2 bn
Bentley SystemsInfrastructure SaaSExtonBSY9/23$22$40.5184.10%$11 bn
Shift Four PaymentsElectronic PaymentsAllentown FOUR6/5$23$75.40227.80%$6 bn
VertexEnterprise Tax SaaSKing of PrussiaVERX7/29$19$34.8583.40%$5.1bn
AccoladeHealthcare SvcsPlymouth MeetinACCD7/2$22$43.5097.70%$2.4bn

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