WeWork has shelved its initial public offering (IPO) after struggling to drum up investor interest in the multibillion-dollar listing. The company had planned to launch a roadshow to raise interest in the IPO and to price and list its shares. The company has said that it now aims to complete its offering by the end of 2019. The group had faced reservations from institutional investors over its floatation, with some raising concerns over the influence WeWork co-founder and chief executive Adam Neumann has over the company as well as its increasing operating losses.
In the last 20 years, UK-based entrepreneurs have built 72 companies, including 13 in the past year, that have exceeded a valuation of US$1billion. This is compared with 29 in Germany, Britain’s closest European rival, and India with 26, according to research for the government’s digital economy council published in June. As the UK looks to compete globally with other nations in the tech race, investor sentiment is crucial to the success of the next generation of British Unicorns.
It found that a third – 33% – of Brits want more flexible ways to invest into businesses than stocks, shares or venture capital investments while a quarter of Brits – 24% – agree that seeing Unicorns and their IPOs fail or not fulfil their potential, such as Uber, has made investing into Initial Public Offerings unpalatable to them.
Likewise, one in five British investors – 21% – feel gold and real-estate does not give them the rapid return on investment that they can get from high-growth, internationally-facing companies. And three in 10 Brits – 28%- would consider using Digital Security Offerings if there was an unbiased, trustworthy source of information about them.
Last but not least, the research has found out that more than two-thirds of British investors – 68% – would only trade or invest where there is security or protection against fraud for their investment.
The Founder and President of NextHash, Ana Bencic, has commented on the findings of the study: “With various political and economic influences affecting businesses today, investors are looking for ways to gain rapid and secure returns on their investment on an international scale. IPOs have been receiving a substantial amount of negative press, in particular, WeWork and its operating losses and valuation, and this is worrying both institutional and retail investors who are looking for a better and more secure solution to access internationally facing high growth startups.”
The expert pointed out that blockchain investment platforms can help make global growth finance for scaling technology businesses more transparent and easy to access. Both individual and institutional traders will be able to engage more with blockchain technology-backed trading, where the businesses are backed by a Digital Security Offering and there exists a greater potential to make rapid returns on their investments than the traditional routes. “As this is adopted into the mainstream, it will revolutionise the way companies in Britain will access scale-up finance, how investors will access these businesses, and how illiquid shares can be traded into liquid capital in ways never imagined before. As Britain prepares for Brexit and WeWork shelve its IPO, new forms of investment could be crucial for these scaling businesses as well as global investors who want to maintain access to the UK marketplace”, Ana Bencic concluded.
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