IPOs With Buzz: Rexnord, Millennial Media

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NEW YORK (TheStreet -- The IPOs with the most buzz this week are Rexnord RXN and Millennial Media MM , and the two companies couldn't be more different from each other.

Rexnord is a leader in the decidedly unglamorous business of water management, while Millennial is in smartphone advertising.

Rexnord will be the largest deal on the calendar for the week as it hopes to raise $450 million through the sale of 23.7 million shares at $18 to $20 each. Some of the excitement about Rexnord is stemming from the success of Allison Transmissions' ALSN IPO as it seems investors are getting hungry for big industrial names.

Rexnord looks to be priced at a premium. At the mid-range, the stock's forward price-to-earnings ratio would be 38X. That compares to Danaher DHR , which trades at a forward P/E of 14.9X; ITT ITT is at 12X; and newcomer Xylem XYL is at 12.9X.

One of the complaints about Allison Transmissions, which is up 1.7% since it went public, was its debt. Well, Rexnord has even more debt that Allison. Its market cap-to-tangible book value is a negative 1.2 and it's coming off the acquisition of VAG Holdings for $238.6 million in October. Rexnord plans to use the proceeds of the IPO to pay off debt and pay Apollo Management APO a $15 million management termination fee. Apollo will still own 69% of Rexnord stock after the IPO.

IPO Desktop President Francis Gaskins agrees that the price is high, but thinks it's okay to buy Rexnord on the offering.

"Institutional buyers like companies with dominant market shares, in the hopes they can squeeze out more earnings going forward," he said. Rexnord says that more than 85% of its total net sales come from products where it is the share leader. Two-thirds of the company's revenue comes from motion control products like bearings and chains, while the remainder comes from water management products.

Meantime, mobile advertising has come under intense focus since the Facebook IPO. Facebook needs to increase advertising revenue off its mobile version because that's where the most active users are.

Millennial Media is a leading independent mobile advertising platform with a 16.7% market share, according to IDC. It's second only to Google GOOG , which has a 23.8% share, while Apple AAPL comes in third with a 15.1% share. Millennial Media is looking to raise $102 million through the sale of 10.2 million shares at $9 to $11 each.

IPO Desktop's Gaskins thinks Millennial may go up on its IPO debut day, and he likes the revenue growth. However, he's concerned that the expenses have remained the same, which could "suggest a lack of profit leverage."

So even though it may go up, he prefers to skip Millennial. "A $750 million valuation for a company that doesn't show much profit leverage on its income statement seems high. I would pass on the IPO," said Gaskins.

--Written by Debra Borchardt in New York.

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Debra Borchardt.

>To follow the writer on Twitter, go to https://twitter.com/wallandbroad.

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