Bandwidth Inc, (Nasdaq: BAND), the Raleigh-based telecommunications company, moved up more than 5 percent from its IPO priced at $20 to $21.12 in late mid-day trading Friday. The company sold $4 million shares at $20 to raise $80 million as its CEO, Chair and co-founder David Morken rang the opening bell on the Nasdaq exchange to celebrate Bandwidth’s IPO Friday morning.
The shares opened at $21.01. They hovered around that mark all day on a volume of 2,318,115 shortly before the closing bell.
Shares ended the day up 6 percent at $21.20 with more than 2.4 million shares being traded.
Morken described the day as “surreal.”
Bandwidth Inc. plans to use the money from the IPO for expansion of their sales, marketing and research and development. The company also intends to use the money for future strategic acquisitions although there are not agreements or commitments withstanding.
The company’s stock will be traded under the ticker BAND.
Underwriters for the offering are Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, KeyBanc Capital Markets Inc., Robert W. Baird & Co., Canaccord Genuity Inc. and JMP Securities LLC.
The underwriters can purchase an additional 600,000 shares to sell to investors in the next 30 days.
“Our Bandwidth Communications Platform empowers enterprises to create and scale voice or text communications services across any application and device,” the company stated in its initial Form S-1, which companies are required to file before going public. “Our software platform and IP voice network enable our enterprise customers to rapidly develop and deploy real-time and mission-critical, software-powered communications solutions.”
The company was formed in 1999 as a home-office start up and grew to employ over 300 people.It raised approximately $33.5 million in equity. It launched Republic Wireless in 2011, which signed up 100,000 subscribers its first week in business and grew revenue to $90 million before spinning out as a separate company.
In the first six months of 2017, Bandwidth reported earnings of $79.2 million, netting $4.9 million.
Bandwidth is a telecommunications company that offers a full suite of voice, messaging and 9-1-1 APIs. Companies such as ZipRecruiter, Cisco and Dialpad all use Bandwidth’s technology. It’s competitors included Twilio, Cisco’s Tropo, and others.
Bandwidth says it prides itself as the only company in its industry that owns both its programming interface and its own Competitive Local Exchange Carrier network. Without such characteristics — the company notes on its website — the quality, support, scalability and cost are hindered.
Morken, who co-founded Bandwidth with director Henry Kaestner, completed his undergraduate education at Oral Roberts University before receiving his law degree from the University of Notre Dame. According to SEC filings, Morken will continue to control a majority of the firm’s outstanding voting after the IPO, making Bandwidth a “controlled company.”
He later joined the Marine Corps as a judge advocate and headquarters company commander before the conception of Bandwidth in 1999.
The company’s headquarters are on Centennial Campus at NC State University in Raleigh.
Note: This story includes reporting from the North Carolina Business News Wire, a service of the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Media and Journalism with additional reporting by WRAL Techwire.