The Renaissance IPO Index is up 37.7% year to date compared to -1.3% for the S&P 500. If you’re interested in making some long-term investments, here are seven new stocks to buy from this index.
By new, I mean stocks that have either had an IPO in 2020 or went public last year but have been added to the index in 2020.
As for IPOs themselves, Renaissance Capital, the people behind both the index and exchange-traded fund, says there have been 71 pricings so far in 2020, down 11.3% from July 14, 2019.
In the past five years, 2018 had the most IPOs with 192. The average between 2015 and 2019 is 157. If 2020 keeps at the same pace, it will come in slightly below the five-year average.
- GFL Environmental (NYSE:GFL)
- Royalty Pharma (NASDAQ:RPRX)
- Warner Music (NASDAQ:WMG)
- ZoomInfo Technologies (NASDAQ:ZI)
- PPD (NASDAQ:PPD)
- Reynolds Consumer Products (NASDAQ:REYN)
- Livongo Health (NASDAQ:LVGO)
Renaissance doesn’t add every IPO to the index. In 2020, there have been nine additions and 24 removals. Six of the seven stocks selected are new additions in 2020. Livongo Health went public in July 2019, and it has done very well for IPO investors.
New Stocks to Buy: GFL Environmental (GFL)
Hailing from Canada, it’s appropriate that the first stock to write about is a Canadian company.
Based in Toronto, GFL Environmental is a waste management business that has been built through organic growth and plenty of acquisitions. It is the fourth-largest diversified environmental services company in North America. It operates in 23 states and every Canadian province except Prince Edward Island.
GFL went public on March 2, 2020, selling 75 million shares at $19 a share, slightly below its price range of $20 to $21. Since going public, GFL stock is down 0.9%.
On June 24, it made an $835 million acquisition of assets divested by Advanced Disposal Services as part of that company’s sale to Waste Management (NYSE:WM) for $3 billion. GFL acquired assets in 10 states that are expected to generate $345 million in annual sales.
The acquisition provides the company with organic growth, meaningful synergies, earnings accretion, a platform for future growth in the U.S. and a presence in the Midwest to add to GFL’s existing operations in Michigan, Georgia, Alabama and Pennsylvania.
Like most waste management organizations, investing in GFL stock ought to be viewed as a long-term hold. It doesn’t currently make money but should once it reaches a certain economy of scale.
Royalty Pharma (RPRX)
Royalty Pharma’s IPO was the biggest on a U.S. stock exchange in 2020. The company, which has made a name for itself buying biopharmaceutical royalties, sold 77.68 million shares of its stock on June 15 for $28 a share, raising $2.18 billion in the process.
RPRX stock gained 58.9% on its first day of trading. In the month since then, it has gone sideways.
It was founded in 1996 by former Lazard banker, Pablo Legorreta, the company’s acquired royalties worth more than $18 billion for treatments for all kinds of diseases, including those related to oncology, neurology, cardiology and diabetes.
“They are looking at the entire universe of proven data which allows them to make well informed decisions around which drugs will be the most commercially successful, regardless of market cycle dynamics,” Jeremy Abelson, founder and portfolio manager at Irving Investors, said recently. “It’s like turning a biotech company into a bond.”
Naturally, because it has acquired the royalties to these treatments, it is profitable. In 2019, it had total revenue of $1.81 billion and an operating income of $2.62 billion. The company intends to pay a quarterly dividend of 15 cents to start, which works out to a current yield of 1.4%.
As Abelson stated, Royalty Pharma has turned biotech investments into a bond. It’s an exciting proposition.
Warner Music (WMG)
When I heard that Warner Music, the third-largest record company in the world, was going public, I was shocked. Who would be interested in investing in an old-school business?
Well, it turns out, plenty of people would. Warner went public on June 3, selling 77 million of its shares at $25 each, raising $1.9 billion for its existing shareholders. The company itself got no proceeds from its IPO.
Typically, you wouldn’t think that would be attractive to investors, but WMG stock gained 20.4% on its first day of trading.
However, if you look at its growth over the past five years, you realize that this isn’t your father’s record company anymore. In 2015, it had $2.97 billion in revenue. By 2019, that had grown to $4.48 billion, a compound annual growth rate of 10.8%.
At the same time, its net income went from a loss of $91 million to a profit of $256 million for a cumulative growth of 381%.
Those might not be a tech company’s growth rate, but it’s darn impressive for a record company.
It’s growing by such an impressive rate because of its streaming revenues, which grew by 13% in the six months ended March 31, 2020, to $1.18 billion. That accounts for 59% of Warner Music’s recorded music segment and 51% overall.
Give credit to billionaire Len Blavatnik, who acquired Warner for $3.3 billion in 2011. Today, it has a market cap of $15.4 billion, and after selling 77 million shares, Blavatnik still owns 90% of its shares.
It will be interesting to see how long he holds on to his shares after the 180-day lock-up ends in December.
ZoomInfo Technologies (ZI)
The cloud-based market intelligence platform went public on June 3, selling 44.5 million shares at $21 a share, raising $935 million in gross proceeds. The company’s stock gained 62% in its first day of trading. Through July 14, it has gained 90% in a little more than a month as a public company.
ZoomInfo is not to be confused with Zoom Video (NASDAQ:ZM), a significant beneficiary of the novel coronavirus, whose stock has gained more than 622% since going public in April 2019.
ZoomInfo provides more than 15,000 companies, including Zoom Video, with the tools and information necessary to find and expand their global footprint.
The company estimates that its total addressable market is approximately $24 billion. Virtually 100% of its annual revenue is subscription-based. It has more than 630 customers generating annual revenues for the company of more than $100,000.
In 2019, ZoomInfo’s revenue was $293.3 million, 103% higher than a year earlier. On the bottom line, it lost $28.6 million, 63% lower than in 2018. In the first quarter, it continued to grow its top- and bottom-line.
As Covid-19 changes the way businesses operate, ZoomInfo’s cloud-based platform ought to benefit from these changes.
On my list of new stocks to buy, I’ve already covered a buyer of biopharma royalties, so why not also suggest readers take a look at PPD, a provider of end-to-end solutions for the development of medical therapies.
PPD, which stands for Pharmaceutical Product Development, is a contract research organization, better known as CRO, that helps companies undertake clinical trials for drug development and approval. PPD is one of the top CROs in the healthcare industry.
The company’s IPO was in February. It sold 60 million shares at $27, raising gross proceeds of $1.62 billion. It used a large portion of the proceeds to pay down debt. Post-IPO, PPD’s debt was $4.2 billion, $1.4 billion less than before the public offering.
Founded in 1985, PPD first went public in 1996 but was taken private by Carlyle Group (NASDAQ:CG) and Hellman & Friedman in 2011. The partners paid $3.9 billion. Assuming the underwriters exercised their option on PPD, Hellman & Friedman owned 45.4% of the company, post-IPO, while Carlyle owned 19.1%.
In the first quarter of 2020, PPD’s revenues were 11.3% higher to $1.08 billion, while adjusted EBITDA increased by 17.3% during the quarter to $196.9 million. It expects to generate revenues of at least $907 million in Q2 2020 with a minimum adjusted EBITDA of $170 million. It finished the first quarter with a backlog of $7.3 billion, 11.9% higher than Q1 2019.
PPD stock has barely budged since its IPO, up just 5.1% since February. Patience will be rewarded.
Reynolds Consumer Products (REYN)
This is one IPO I didn’t think would fly off the shelves — and initially, it didn’t.
Reynolds Consumer Products sold 47.2 million shares of its stock at the end of January at $26 a share, raising gross proceeds of $1.23 billion. Its shares rose just 9.8% in its first day of trading, well below the average first-day return of 18% for U.S. IPOs between 1980 and 2019.
However, since then, it has come on like a house on fire. REYN stock is up 31.6% from its IPO price through July 14. That’s well ahead of the markets as a whole.
As I said in the beginning, I wasn’t a fan of Reynolds’ IPO. In February, shortly after it went public, I provided investors with seven reasons why not to buy its stock. Chief among my arguments was that it had lots of debt, little growth and sales outside North America would be hard to come by.
And then the pandemic happened. Aluminum foil became a valuable commodity for bakers and chefs homebound by Covid-19.
In late June, Stifel analyst Mark Astrachan argued that at-home eating remains well-above pre-Covid levels. As a result, the analyst felt stocks such as Reynolds Consumer Products would continue to benefit from this trend, which doesn’t appear to be going away.
Astrachan has a buy rating on REYN stock with a $40 price target. That provides a potential upside of 16% over the next year, not including the annualized dividend of 62 cents.
Livongo Health (LVGO)
The last name on this list went public on July 24, 2019. I’m selecting Livongo Health because it was one of five June additions to the Renaissance IPO Index. The other four new stocks are all on this list.
It also helps that Livongo Health is fresh in my memory.
On July 9, I included the company best known for its technology platform’s ability to detect diabetes, on a list of seven stocks that are hot and likely to stay that way. It also has solutions for weight management, hypertension and behavioral health.
“With an asset-light business model, I find it hard to believe Livongo’s revenues are going to slow anytime soon. Further, it has more than enough cash to survive the novel coronavirus and anything else Mother Nature chooses to throw at the world,” I wrote July 9. “I see LVGO as the diamond-in-the-rough of the seven hot stocks on my list. It’s going to surprise a lot of people in the future.”
With revenues expected to grow 70% in 2020, LVGO stock should continue to move higher, despite the fact it has gained 261% from its IPO price of $28.
I like it a lot.
Will Ashworth has written about investments full-time since 2008. Publications where he’s appeared include InvestorPlace, The Motley Fool Canada, Investopedia, Kiplinger, and several others in both the U.S. and Canada. He particularly enjoys creating model portfolios that stand the test of time. He lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia. At the time of this writing Will Ashworth did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.