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E-Mailbag Monday: IPOs, Pumatech

What looks hot in the IPO market this week?

Reply: Very little. This week, there are only two IPOs planned. First, there is Rigel Pharmaceuticals. The company develops sophisticated technology to help speed up the analysis of genetic information for new biotech drugs. But the company is very early stage and, as a result, investor demand has been tepid.

The price range has been reduced from $10-$12 to $7-$8. Also, the number of shares to be issued was slashed from 9 million to 5 million.

The lead underwriter is Morgan Stanley and the proposed ticker symbol is RIGL.

Next, there is Interbrew. This is the second largest brewer in the world (yes, even bigger than Anheuser-Busch). The brands include Bass and Rolling Rock.

Again, demand for the IPO is light. The lead underwriter is Merrill Lynch and the proposed ticker symbol is ITBR. The price range is $30-$38 and the company plans to issue 88.2 million shares.

Pumatech

What is your view of Pumatech?

Reply: Well, the view of Wall Street is very negative. Then again, Wall Street has been consistently negative. Pumatech is a former high flier, with a 52-week range of $7-1/4 to $102-7/16. Currently, the stock is trading at $8-7/8.

Of course, with the slowdown in the economy, Pumatech has also suffered. Yet, in the company's latest earnings report, the financials were still strong. Revenues increased 55% from last year to $9.9 million. Losses were $3.3 million.

The company is a leader in synchronization technology for wireless devices. By all accounts, this market has a huge future and Pumatech should be a long-term beneficiary.