A Fool Looks Back

It probably wasn't a good week to go public. Shares of King Digital Entertainment  (NYSE: KING  )  tanked after going public on Wednesday. The mobile gaming leader behind Candy Crush Saga priced its IPO at $22.50, but Wednesday's debut wasn't as sweet as the candy pieces on its signature casual game. 

The stock opened lower, losing 16% of its value to close at $19. Busted IPOs sometimes bounce back the next day, but that wasn't in King's cards. The stock closed lower on Thursday and Friday, wrapping up the week with a nearly 20% slide off its debut price.

King's problems center on having too much riding on a single game that may have peaked in popularity two quarters ago. The only real surprise is that it was able to price its deal so high, since usually underwriters are able to get the first wave of investors to buy in for less than what retail investors will be willing to shell out after the stock begins trading.

Shares of 2U (NASDAQ: TWOU  ) seemed destined for the same fate two days later. The provider of cloud-based university education services priced its debut at $13. It opened lower and stayed in the pre-teens for the first hour of trading before breaking through the $13 ceiling to close 8% higher on the day.

It's true that 2U has been posting steep losses, unlike King which has managed two years of healthy profitability. The difference here is that 2U has been posting strong top-line growth, unlike King, which spooked the market by posting a sequential decline in the fourth quarter in several key metrics.

Either way, the market has plenty of new blood to mull over since it wasn't just King and 2U going public this week. 

Briefly in the news
And now let's look at some of the other stories that shaped our week.

  • BlackBerry  (NASDAQ: BBRY  )  moved higher after posting mixed quarterly results on Friday. Revenue fell sharply, but everyone knows that BlackBerry as a smartphone platform is fading away. The surprise here is that BlackBerry's adjusted net loss wasn't as bad as the market was fearing. 
  • Bank of America  (NYSE: BAC  )  was cleared to bump up its quarterly dividend from the token $0.01 a share. Investors of the banking giant will now be receiving $0.05 a share every three months. That still doesn't add up to much of a yield, but it shows how banking has come a long way. Several financial services institutions showed enough fiscal improvement to have yield dividend hikes approved by regulators.  
  • Tesla Motors (NASDAQ: TSLA  )  has been striking deals with states to keep its direct-selling model alive. That's no easy task, given the strong lobbying power of rich owners of traditional showrooms, but the electric-car maker struck deals to protect its retail centers in Ohio and New York this past week. 

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  • Report this Comment On March 30, 2014, at 6:26 AM, Interventizio wrote:

    I can't figure out why one would buy a company like KING. Wait at least until it has built a franchise, a projected lineup of games of some sort etc.

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Rick Munarriz

Rick has been writing for Motley Fool since 1995 where he's a Consumer and Tech Stocks Specialist. Yes, that's a long time. He's been an analyst for Motley Fool Rule Breakers and a portfolio lead analyst for Motley Fool Supernova since each newsletter service's inception. He earned his BBA and MBA from the University of Miami, and he now lives a block from his alma mater.

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