Biggest mobile app IPOs

As investors flock to buy shares in mobile app’s like Coinbase, Bumble, and Airbnb, Comparemymobile.com looks at the mobile apps (and parent companies) that had the best opening days on the stock market, and who raised the most money from their IPO.

Whether it’s keeping in touch with friends, ordering something to eat, or even finding a date, it seems like there’s an app for almost anything these days - but that wasn’t always the case.

In the early years, the App Store was a place where you could turn your phone into a lightsaber or an electric shaver, and before there was such a thing as freemium games and microtransactions, we had Doodle Jump and Fruit Ninja.

But as smartphones became more powerful, businesses and developers began to realise the potential that mobile applications had to disrupt entire industries, which is why today we have the power to open a bank account, buy stocks and shares, or stream our favourite movies and TV shows at our fingertips.

So, considering how far mobile apps have come in a relatively short period of time and the significant role they play in our day-to-day lives, it’s no surprise that both Wall Street and retail investors alike get excited when one decides to go public.

But which apps and parent companies drew the most interest on the day they floated on the stock market, and who raised the most money from investors?

Most & least successful mobile app IPOs

The increase between initial price and day one closing price (%)

* Direct Offering: IPO price is reference price. Deal size sourced from Renaissance Capital

Airbnb might not hold the title for the biggest app IPO but it was certainly the most successful one.

After pricing its shares at $68, the stock rocketed to $146 by the time markets opened and continued to climb as high as $165 before closing the day at $144.71 - that’s an increase of 112.81% in just one day.

On the other end of the scale, Deliveroo ended its first day of trading at $3.94 (287.45 pence), or 26.4% below its initial price of $5.36 (390 pence). Since going public at the end of March the price has yet to recover and has trades as low as $3.50 (247.21 pence), or 36.61% below its initial price.

Upcoming app IPOs in 2021

With Coinbase, Bumble, Roblox, and Deliveroo having hit exchanges in 2021, its already been a bumper year for mobile IPOs - but there’s plenty roe to come.

Here’s a list of other app-based businesses expected to go public this year:

  • Robinhood
  • Nextdoor
  • PensionBee
  • Wise (Transferwise)
  • ByteDance Ltd. aka TikTock
  • Instacart

Check back to see where these upcoming listings will rank among the best app IPOs, or if you can think of one we missed, let us know.

The biggest mobile app IPOs

By money raised ($)

* Direct Offering (DPO) - deal size sourced from Renaissance Capital

While technically a Direct Listing, Coinbase was one of the most anticipated offerings of the year and more than lived up top the hype when it began trading at $381 a share, which is 52% higher than the NASDAQ reference price of $250.

During its opening day, the Coinbase share price rose as high as $429 before settling back down to end the day at $328.28 and raising an estimated $28.71 billion - which would make it not just the largest mobile app listing, but the largest listing EVER.

Interestingly, three of the top five (or 4 of the top 10) biggest listings opted for a Direct offering in place of an IPO. However, If we were to exclude Direct Offerings, Facebook would be well out in front with $16 billion.

Direct Listing vs. Initial Public Offerings (IPO)

The biggest difference between a direct listing and an IPO is that one sells existing stocks while the other issues new stock shares.

Direct Listing:

  • Employees and investors sell their existing stocks directly to the public.
  • No intermediaries.
  • The company may not have funds to pay underwriters or not want to dilute their shares.
  • No safety net to ensure shares sell.

IPO:

  • The company sells part of the company by issuing new stocks.
  • Requires underwriters who charge a commission.
  • Interest-free way of raising capital.

Rob Baillie at comparemymobile.com said: “Between big IPOs and Meme Stocks, 2021 has already been a huge year for the stock market, and thanks to mobile apps like Robinhood, Trading 212, and Fidelity, it’s easier than ever for retail investors to get involved.

“There’s often a lot of hype around IPOs and it’s easy to get caught up in the rush, but it’s important to remember that the stock market can be extremely volatile. Even stocks like Airbnb who had successful opening days saw their share prices take a tumble once the hype had died down.

“Before investing be sure to take some time to research the company so you know exactly what you’re putting your money into, or you might also want to consider speaking to a financial adviser who can offer independent advice.”

Method

Using data from Yahoo Finance, Fool.com, and Renaissance Capital we looked at the business and parent companies behind some of the worlds most popular apps that had also floated on the stock market to see which had the best and worst opening days, as well as who raised the most money via the listing.

Currencies were converted to USD using historic exchange rates from poundsterlinglive.com.

For direct listings, IPO size was sourced from Renaissance Capital.