Quantum Bridge Stays the Course
Quantum Bridge Communications Inc., a company focused on access products designed to bring optical bandwidth to office buildings and residential neighborhoods, is one such company. The company is staying the course because, as CEO and president Anthony Zona says, the "experts" may be wrong.
"The one thing I've learned about the market in the past six months is that the experts who say they know where things are going have been wrong," he told Light Reading, after his presentation here to the somber crowd at NGN Ventures (see Reality Bites at NGN Conference). "But we don't have to worry about being wrong or right so long as we're able to take advantage of where the market's heading." (See Quantum Bridge Aims for IPO.}
Zona adds that remaining in registration to go public -- even with the required quarterly financial updates and a corresponding tendency to muffle a firm's publicity efforts -- "is no big burden."
That's a minority opinion these days. According to recent data from VentureOne, a venture capital research firm, only five venture-backed firms went public in the first three months of 2001, while 40 firms withdrew their offerings (see Money Crunch Pressures Startups).
Upon withdrawing its IPO in March, OMM Inc. CFO Phil Chapman told Light Reading that, all other things being equal, "people don't like to be in active registration." He said keeping finances audited and posted, as well as cataloging every material event for the world to see, was a major pain (see IPO Window Shuts Tighter).
So does it hint at desperation if a firm's still in registration, even during the lousiest of IPO markets? Not at all, says Zona. Having announced a $102 million funding round one year ago today, Zona says Quantum Bridge has enough cash to last another year and adds that Quantum would raise a private placement round if need be (see Quantum Bridge Raises $102 Million).
"Now, if we were heading out on an IPO road show at this point, that would be a different story altogether," he says.
-- Phil Harvey, Senior Editor, Light Reading http://www.lightreading.com