On the Mend?

As expected, the IPO market has been shriveling up. Next week, there are
only six IPOs planned.

Nonetheless, there are encouraging signs that the IPO market will return.
Of course, the main driver is Nasdaq, and it is starting to show more
strength lately.

So let’s take a look at next week’s IPOs.

c-quential is a
high-tech consulting firm. But aren’t these supposed to be out-of-favor?
Well, this firm is different, as it focuses on the communications industry.

No doubt, the communications industry is undergoing rapid change. In other
words, there are great opportunities for well-heeled (i.e., high-priced)
consultants. As for c-quential, the company has offices in 20 countries and
has been in existence for about 14 years. Clients include world leaders,
such as Siemens, KPN Telecom and Mannesmann AG.

Currently, the company is a division of Arthur D. Little. In fact, about
$70 million in bank debt will be transferred from ADL to c-quential.

But c-quential does have strong financials. Last year, the company had
$106.5 million in revenues and $10.7 million in profits.

The lead underwriter is Lehman Brothers and the price range is $13-$15 (the
company plans to issue 7.25 million shares). The proposed ticker symbol is

Next, keep an eye on XACCT Technologies.
Simply put, the company develops a software platform that allows network
service providers to offer more services. With the technology, companies
can do real-time data collection, data aggregation and automated user
account provisioning. So far the company has 20 customers. They include
Verio, UUNET and MCI WorldCom. The company has also established
relationships with over 70 system integrators, software application vendors
and value-added resellers.

The lead underwriter is CS First Boston and the price range is $9-$11 (the
company plans to issue 5 million shares). The proposed ticker symbol is

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