Gaming firm Roblox, a favourite among kids spending their parents’ money globally, burst onto Wall Street last week in a direct listing that boosted its market capitalisation to almost $38bn.
Its shares rallied on the first day of trading on 10 March, closing up more 54.4% at $69.50 per share compared to its offer price set by the New York Stock Exchange of $45.
The company chose a direct listing, in which shares are not backed by underwriters. Prominent exchange-traded fund operator ARK bought a stake in the business of more than 500,000 shares on Roblox’s debut, with the tech firm’s in-game economy (and Robux currency) presenting an interesting prospect for investors.
But despite the company’s hype among traders and kids alike, Roblox’s debut came near the bottom of the pack when put among this year’s most successful debuts on Wall Street for technology companies.
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Data compiled for Financial News by Dealogic showed that compared to the top 10 technology IPOs in 2021 by share price performance on the first day of trading, Roblox would have ranked in eighth place.
Fashion resellers’ marketplace Poshmark took the top spot, having seen its shares close 132.1% above its initial offer price, rising to $97.50 per share from $42.
Meanwhile, fintech lender Affirm came in second place with an 85.5% increase on its debut in January, followed by Chinese tech giant Coupang at 68.8% and dating app Bumble at 76.7%.
Roblox’s 54.4% performance was close to that of virtual events tech firm On24, ranked in ninth place after its shares rose 54.0% on its first day to $77.
Here’s where Roblox fits across the top 10, ranked by percentage increase on closing price:
Poshmark — closed at $97.50, up 132.1%
Affirm — $90.90, up 85.5%
Coupang — $63.50, up 81.4%
Bumble — $76, up 76.7%
Viant — $44, up 76.0%
Motorsport Games — $35, up 75.0%
Cloopen Group — $27, up 68.8%
Roblox — $69.50, up 54.4%
On24 — $77, up 54.0%
Qualtrics — $41.85, up 39.5%
To contact the author of this story with feedback or news, email Emily Nicolle