RealTime IT News

IPO Tracker: More and More Infrastructure Plays

The theme for next week's IPO market will be infrastructure. And the infrastructure company that should have the most buzz is Corio.

The company is an ASP (application server provider). That is, it helps to manage complex information technology needs for corporations. For Corio's services, companies will typically pay a fixed fee. The pricing model is known as "rented software." Corio rents top software packages such as from PeopleSoft, SAP, and Siebel Systems.

The market for ASP services looks particularly bright. The market was $900 million in 1998 and is expected to soar to $23 billion by 2003 (according to the Gartner Group).

The lead underwriter is Goldman Sachs and the proposed ticker symbol is CRIO. The price range is $11-$13.

Airspan Networks should be another strong IPO. The company develops fixed wireless communications access systems. Thus, customers can deliver high speed data and voice services to wireless customers. What's more, the technology is cost effective and can be deployed quickly.

The company started shipping its product in 1996 and the systems have been installed by over 35 communications service providers in 25 countries.

The lead underwriter is CS First Boston and the proposed ticker symbol is AIRN. The price range is $9-$11.

Then there is the infrastructure play Talarian . The company has software that enables businesses to exchange information in real-time with suppliers, customers and partners. There are over 300 customers, such as MCI, Chicago Board Options Exchange, Cisco and Southwest Airlines. Interestingly enough, the technology is also implemented in high-end tech products, like software from Computer Associates and BMC Software.

Talarian was founded in 1988 and originally focused on the aerospace industry. Since then, the company has done a good job of shifting its product line to broad-based corporate uses.

The lead underwriter is Lehman Brothers and the proposed ticker symbol is TALR. The price range is $12-$14.

Finally, Support.com plans to go public. Unfortunately, so far the demand appears to be tepid. The company develops software to streamline a company's customer support organizations. But it is a very competitive marketplace.

That said, the company does have a strong customer base. Companies include: Bear Stearns, Compaq Professional Services, Computer Sciences, Excite@Home, and JCPenney.

And the market is big. The e-support services market is estimated to grow from $3 billion in 1999 to $14 billion by 2003.

The lead underwriter is CS First Boston and the proposed ticker symbol is STMX. The price range is $8-$10.