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Westwicke Blog

The Westwicke Blog is designed to deliver information and insights into the ever-changing world of investor relations and the capital markets, with a specific focus on the healthcare industry.

The IPO Window May Be Reopening: 5 Things to Do Now

Posted on April 13th, 2016. Posted by

So you thought you were on the fast track to go public. You selected underwriters, increased investor outreach, prepared the organization, and probably attended a few conferences. But suddenly the markets turned, volatility came back, and the IPO window closed!

This is exactly the scenario that many companies have been facing this year. The NASDAQ Index is down 1.6% and the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index is down 20.8% year to date — not exactly ideal conditions to take your company public. However, sentiment has been improving recently, and the Volatility Index is at lower levels. The IPO window may indeed reopen soon, and if your goal is to go public when it does, we encourage you to use this time proactively.

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Why Now Is Exactly the Time to Consider the IPO Process

Posted on February 3rd, 2016. Posted by

Anyone who pays attention to Wall Street knows that 2016 has gotten off to a bruising start. The Dow is off nearly 7 percent since the beginning of the year, and more than 10 percent since peaking last May. The S&P 500 and NASDAQ Composite Index have seen similar declines since their peaks.

That’s a tough environment in which to go public. And, indeed, not a single company did so in January, the first month in more than four years that lacked an IPO. Right now, investors just aren’t sure how to value new offerings while the broader market continues its correction.

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2016 J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference: Lessons Learned

Posted on January 20th, 2016. Posted by

The 2016 J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference has concluded, and while the market backdrop for this year’s event was noticeably less positive than it has been in recent years, the conference was nevertheless rich with important lessons. We polled our team on what struck them most about the event, and what guidance they’d offer to companies attending future conferences. We found their responses illuminating, and we think you will, too. Enjoy.

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Our Top Healthcare Investor Relations Blog Posts of 2015

Posted on January 6th, 2016. Posted by

2015 was a volatile year on Wall Street, but healthcare was a source of strength and stability for investors. While most of the major indices declined, healthcare stocks returned 5.3% last year, with several sub-sectors experiencing significant outperformance (see chart below). And 78 healthcare companies went public in 2015, the most of any sector.

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The 5 Key Considerations for Choosing an Investment Banker

Posted on December 16th, 2015. Posted by

I recently was able to sit in on a “banker bake-off.” It was very interesting to sit on the side of the table with the management team and hear how the various banks “pitch” their strengths. It didn’t take long to identify how each bank brings something unique to the table.

One bank talked about its relationships with the buy-side accounts while another bank highlighted its research analysts’ expertise in the company’s therapeutic space, and yet a third bank spoke highly of its track record for successfully getting private companies public.

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Seven Signs Your Company Isn’t Ready for an IPO

Posted on May 27th, 2015. Posted by

7 Signs Your Company Isn't Ready for IPO

Is it time to take your company public? Many executives dream of the day when their business begins trading shares on Wall Street, but an IPO is an expensive and grueling process that necessarily distracts you from your core business. And a failed attempt at an offering can damage your credibility for many years.

That’s why it’s vital to be sure you’re ready to go public before you begin the formal process. Here are seven signs that you’re not quite there yet:

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Lessons From The Sell Side: 5 Tips for Talking to Wall Street

Posted on May 20th, 2015. Posted by

5 Lessons for Talking to Wall Street

It’s hard to believe I have already been working at Westwicke Partners for 90 days. After a long career as a sell-side equity analyst, the last three months have truly given me a new perspective on how I view company management teams vs. how the Street views them.

For 25 years, I was paid to poke holes in stories — and believe me, in many cases it was easy to do and I would ask myself, Why can’t this management team just get it right? Now, looking from the inside out, I can more clearly see some of the reasons.

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Looking for an Investment Bank? Don’t Overlook Institutional Sales

Posted on April 15th, 2015. Posted by

Institutional Sales

When shopping for a major purchase, say for a new home or car, many people wisely draft lists of must-have features and optional nice-to-have features.

Compiling a list of needs and wants is also valuable to companies searching for an investment bank, especially given how frequently they fail to evaluate a key feature: the banks’ institutional sales forces. During my 18 years on Wall Street, I can’t tell you how often I saw companies make the mistake of considering the right sales force a want-to-have feature, when they should have considered it a must-have.

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Secrets to a Successful IPO

Posted on April 8th, 2015. Posted by

Key to a Successful IPO

Last year was a record for biotechnology IPOs, with some 82 companies raising a combined $5.5 billion. Not all IPOs are created equal, however. A good IPO is one that benefits all stakeholders and leaves the door open to future mutually beneficial collaboration.

What, then, are the secrets of successful IPOs?

Let’s start with one of the basics. The success of an IPO is judged first on whether or not participating investors make money on the transaction, and secondarily, on whether the listing company raises the funds it was seeking.

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Key Takeaways of the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference

Posted on February 6th, 2015. Posted by

J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference 2015

If one word alone could describe the J.P. Morgan 33rd Annual Healthcare Conference, that word, from my purview, would be productive. I met one-on-one with management teams from 44 companies, and nearly our entire team came together in San Francisco that week to take part in the conference and help clients fine-tune and deliver on their 2015 investor relations plans.

At Westwicke, we consider J.P. Morgan the “super bowl” of investor conferences. No, we don’t eat chicken wings and shout at the TV, but a lot of action happens at J.P. Morgan — this year even more than in the past. And just like in football, it pays to show up ready and prepared because, as we’ve discussed before on this blog, an elevator ride with the right person (and the right pitch) can make all the difference.

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