Ruckus Wireless IPO disappoints, stock price sinks 18 percent on first day

Ruckus Wireless (RKUS) went public on Friday, November 16, at $15 per share, in one of the most closely watched IPOs because it was the first since Election Day and was considered to be a test of the IPO market. Several companies had already postponed their IPOs because of rough market conditions, but Ruckus went ahead with theirs. The stock closed at $12.25, 18 percent below the offering price.

Analysts believe the company erred by pricing it at the high end, at a time when many investors are selling shares (note: many investors believe that taxes on capital gains will increase next year so they want to realize gains this year).

The disappointing first day of Ruckus’s IPO does not say anything about the quality of the company’s products, which are considered by ISPs to be first-rate. Instead, they got sucked into the overall market conditions — tax planning among investors, fund managers seeking to show gains this year, nervousness about the fiscal cliff — anything but the quality of Ruckus’s products, their market penetration, their competitive advantage over established companies like Cisco and new ones like Ubiquiti (UBNT).

When market conditions improve next year, we’ll see how Ruckus does. If it continues to show massive growth in revenues and profits, good margins, increasing market share and innovation, the stock price will go up.