"An IPO has become a serious alternative”


On 28 November the first Swiss IPO Day will take place in Zurich organised by Swiss Startup Invest. At the event high-tech companies with high potential will meet the relevant investment bankers and advisors. We talked with Jean-Pierre Vuilleumier, Managing Director of Swiss Startup Invest, about the event and IPOs in general.


IPO Day takes place the first time. Why at this precise moment?
There are a few reasons for that. First of all we always complain that there is not enough growth financing for our grown up Startups. Secondly online IPO platforms are emerging and also allowing for smaller IPOs. In conclusion an IPO has become a serious alternative. Furthermore, the technology game is changing, companies have to go further independently and need much more financing to be successful. And, pan-European stock markets increasingly target technology companies, also in Switzerland. One of them is partnering with us! They are very active in Switzerland and see lots of potential here.

Aren't investors sceptical when Startups speak about IPOs?
In the past we made sure that no startups is mentioning this exit option as there were no viable solutions out there for smaller IPOs. I have to confess, we bullied them into not having that dream! After the “dotcom” blast, no one could or was well received having this vision for their company here in Switzerland. It wasn’t enabled or possible either, frankly speaking. Now it is!

Will the IPO Day be interesting only for later stage startups that are already considering an exit?
The focus is on more mature Startups, we prefer to call them High Tech Companies, with high potential. But of course also younger startups can benefit from the workshop offered at the event.

What can startups expect? 
They can meet the relevant investment bankers and advisors at the event. If they are lucky even have a 1:1 meeting with their favorite ones.

Is it still possible for startups to register for the event and to arrange one to one meetings?
As a matter of fact the 1:1 meeting can be booked starting today. We needed first a critical mass of investment bankers and IPO advisors on our platform, which we now have. More and more are registering. Same for the High Tech Startups.

Why should IPO advisors and investment bankers take part?
They can expect to meet the most promising Swiss High Tech Companies. A unique opportunity to meet and talk to many of them in one afternoon. The format is innovative and efficient. 

Apart from startups, IPO advisors and investment bankers – who else should attend and why?
We see a strong interest from our investor members to join the event. The reason is that they want to understand better the IPO landscape and process. It is important for them to better understand the IPO exit path for their portfolio companies.

Which startups will pitch at the event?
As of today the following Swiss High Tech Companies will be on Stage: (more to come): AMAL (Biotech), Xeltis (Biotech), NBE Therapeutics (Biotech), Abionic (Medtech), Distalmotion (Medtech), AVA (Medtech), Aleva Neuro (medtech), Swissto12 (Micro/Nano), HeiQ (Nano), Creditgate24 (Fintech/ICT).
All of them are already well known in the ecosystem and very promising Swiss High Tech Companies, grown up Startups!

The first Swiss IPO Day will be held on 28 November at Kraftwerk Selnau in Zurich. More information and registration on the website of the event.