3 Companies That Dared to Go Public

The IPO calendar has slowed to a trickle, but there are still a few companies kicking off their publicly traded lives.

Three offerings managed to go public last week.

The big name was SolarCity (NASDAQ: SCTY  ) . The stock received plenty of media attention because its chairman is none other than Tesla Motors (NASDAQ: TSLA  ) helmsman Elon Musk.

It's hard to underestimate Musk's role here. When he appeared on CNBC alongside SolarCity's CEO the day the stock began trading, Jim Cramer couldn't resist asking Musk about Tesla.

"Today is about SolarCity," Musk deflected, keeping the focus on the fast-growing though profitless installer of solar energy solutions.

The SolarCity model is intriguing, financing installations and maintenance plans for residential and corporate clients over as long as 20 years. The move helps the company position itself as cost-effective relative to oil and gas utilities.

The IPO didn't seem as if it would be a hit at first, as investors worried about the growing losses at the company. Underwriters were originally looking to take SolarCity public between $13 and $15 a share, but had to settle for just $8. However, the stock soared last week and today is closing in on the low end of its original pricing range.

Last week's other debutantes may not seem as exciting in retrospect, but they should attract at least some degree of interest for yield-chasing REIT investors and folks looking for a fresh energy play.

Silver Bay Realty Trust (NYSE: SBY  ) is a REIT that buys single-family homes and then turns them around as rentals. PBF Energy (NYSE: PBF  )  has acquired three domestic petroleum refining facilities over the past two years.

 Company

IPO

Dec. 17, 2012

Gain/Loss

Silver Bay Realty Trust

$18.50

$18.20

(2%)

PBF Energy

$26

$28.04

8%

SolarCity

$8

$12.30

54%

Source: The Wall Street Journal.

On average, it was a great week. Don't shed a tear for Silver Bay. The residential REIT may have started off as a busted IPO, but earlier this morning it did poke its head up above last week's $18.50 IPO price. We'll have to see if it stays there.

This week will be far quieter. There's just one IPO expected to price later this week, and that's a small 3.3 million share offering by biotech Audeo Oncology.

If the fiscal cliff is averted, it's safe to say that the pipeline will begin gushing early next year.

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