IPO Roundup: Virata, iManage, Web Street prep IPOs

Four tech companies make their market debuts

A handful of tech companies are prepped to make their market debuts Wednesday as Web Street, iManage and Virata priced IPOs at the top or above their projected ranges. Rainmaker Systems priced at the bottom of its price range.

Here's a look at the prospects:

iManage which makes software for e-business communication management, priced its 3.6 million shares at $11 (£7), well above its price range of $8 to $10 a share.

The company had revenue of $12.7m for the nine months ended September 30, versus $ 4.8m for the 1998 period. Net loss widened slightly to $2.7m from $2.6m in the six months of 1998.

The company depends heavily on law firm customers, and states in its regulatory filings that if it does not expand sales to other customers, it may not be able to keep up with past growth rates. Licenses to law firms and professional service firms accounted for 94 percent of iManage's total revenue for the nine month period ended September 30.

Robertson Stephens is the lead underwriter for the offering. USB Piper Jaffray and C.E. Unterberg Towbin are co-managers.

Rainmaker Systems will offer 5 million shares at $8, the bottom of the $8 to $10 a share price range. Rainmaker provides customer relationship management services to software companies with sales, marketing and other customer relationship programs using the Internet.

Rainmaker had revenue of $42 million for the nine months ended September 30, versus $30.4 million for the same period a year ago. Net loss was $4.6 million for the most recent 9 months, compared to a profit of $2.3 million for the 1998 period. Donaldson Lufkin is the lead underwriter. Thomas Weisel and SG Cowen are co-managers.

Virata has tagged its 5 million shares at $14, above its raised $11 to $13 price range. The range was raised from $9 to $11 a share. The company provides communications processors and software to digital subscriber line equipment manufacturers.

Virata had revenue of $3.5m for the six months ended October 3, 1999, a good uptick from the $1.7 million the company netted in the same period of 1998. Net loss narrowed to $7.6 million, versus $11.7m in 1998.

Virata relies on third party foundries to manufacture its semiconductors. It also relies on a limited number of customers. For the six months ended October 3, Orckit Communications, Com21, Netopia and Westell Technologies accounted for 51.5 percent, 11.6 percent, 8.9 percent and 7.0 percent, respectively, of its total revenue.

CS First Boston is the lead underwriter for the offering, Warburg Dillon Read and Thomas Weisel are co-managers. Online broker Web Street priced its 3.5 million shares at $11 a share, the top of its $9 to $11 price range. Fahnestock & Co. is the lead underwriter with an assist from Pacific Crest.

Web Street had revenue of $17.1m and a net loss of $3.9m for the nine months ending September 30. The company had $519m in assets at the end of that period.

The company, which caters to active traders, faces stiff competition from a host of online brokers.

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