Making Sense of IPOs

We often hear the phrase a company is “going public” or “in filing for initial public offering (IPO),” referring to a private company that is planning to offer shares to public investors for the first time. While volatility persists in the current market, there is clearly an appetite for IPOs in 2020.

Some significant IPOs have taken place since June 2020: Lemonade, Vroom, ZoomInfo Technologies, Warner Music Group are leading the surge in the IPO market. As of Sep. 4, IPOs in 2020 have averaged a 36% first-day pop, and S-1 filings were up 50% from summer 2019, according to Renaissance Capital.

In this Public Talks virtual event, you’ll learn the basics of investing in IPOs and what to look for in an IPO prospectus. We will deep dive into the differences between an IPO and a Direct Listing. Moreover, we will take a look at the upcoming IPOs in 2020 with our speakers.

This talk is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be investment advice. When it comes to conversations about the stock market, past performance does not guarantee future results. The opinions of guest panelists are their own. For more information, see

Topics covered

  • How to invest in IPOs?
  • How are IPOs priced?
  • Dissecting an S1 - What should I look for in an IPO prospectus?
  • What is the typical IPO process from the company perspective?
  • What is the difference between IPOs and Direct Listing?
  • Hunting Unicorns? Making Sense of upcoming IPOs in 2020


David Wei

David Wei is a public equity investor focused on compounders and sustainable investing. Most recently at Durable Capital Partners, David is a graduate of the renowned Value Investing Program at Columbia Business School, where he received his MBA in 2019.

Karine Hsu

Karine Hsu is partner at SLOPE Agency and co-author of Pocket Change.

Meera Clark

Meera is a consumer-focused investor at Obvious Ventures, a venture capital fund based in San Francisco and started by Twitter and Medium founder Ev Williams. At Obvious, Meera is focused on the firm’s fintech, consumer health, and CPG investments. Prior to joining Obvious, Meera invested in and advised high-growth technology companies at Morgan Stanley. Meera holds a BS in Management Science and Engineering with a focus on Entrepreneurship from Stanford University. She is a proud North Carolinian and self-proclaimed nerd for the public markets.

Mario Gabriele

Mario Gabriele is the founder of The Generalist, a new media company covering tech from idea to IPO. He is also a Venture Partner at Charge, an early-stage VC firm based in NYC. He enjoys fiction, British crime dramas, and Indian food.

Willa Tellekson-Flash

Willa is’s Community Operations Lead, where she immerses herself in a diverse community of investors and conversations about the companies they all believe in. Public makes investing inclusive, educational, and fun by adding a social layer to the stock market. You can find her on Public at