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阿里巴巴上市:雅虎成最大输家

Shawn Tully 2014年09月20日

阿里巴巴上市当天涨幅惊人。但稍微算一下就会发现,阿里巴巴及其大股东用近100亿美元的成本筹集了250亿美元资金,相当于产生了40%的“销售费用”。最大的赢家是对冲基金和承销商,而最大的输家是雅虎和阿里巴巴公司自己。

聚焦阿里巴巴上市专题

· 阿里上市后,最大的竞争挑战是什么?
· 高利润率只是海市蜃楼:阿里并不像看上去那么能赚钱
· 阿里的收购野心及其背后的风险
· 硅谷怎么看阿里巴巴?
· 股东再吃亏,阿里高层也不会亏
· 阿里上市造就日本新首富孙正义

    大局已定。阿里巴巴(Alibaba)上市当天涨幅惊人。华尔街青睐的客户发了一笔数十亿美元的横财,为他们创造赚钱机会的投行也将从这些心存感激的客户那里得到数以十亿计的回馈,而让这一切成为现实的阿里巴巴所有者应当倍感惭愧。

    差一点忘了说,现在我们知道了——至少在眼下——要得到阿里巴巴的股票得花多少钱。这场“秀”应该让大家感到惊艳,但对这只股票大家应该敬而远之。

    周五,也就是9月19日,阿里巴巴上市首日收于93.89美元。刚一开盘这只股票就突破了90美元,而且几乎一整天都保持在90美元以上;下午4点收盘时,阿里巴巴上涨了25.89美元,和68美元的发行价相比蹿升了38%。这个发行价在阿里巴巴就要上市前才敲定,是机构投资者和少数个人从承销商那里拿到的“内部价”。按93.89美元的股价计算,这家中国电子商务巨擘的市值为2314亿美元,达到国际领先水平,超过了很多上市已久的公司,比如市值均为1770亿美元的甲骨文(Oracle)和英特尔(Intel),以及市值1930亿美元的辉瑞(Pfizer)。

    这次外界大肆炒作的首发有些讽刺,原因有两方面。首先,上市当天股价飙升带来的欣喜之情掩盖了一个明显的事实,那就是一些人发的横财都来自另一些人的口袋。然而,没有人提到那些输家,就连输家自己也是如此。其次,这样的估值水平给阿里巴巴设定了一个盈利标准,只有达标投资者才能受益。巨大的市值让这只大型电商股必要的攀升显得相当夸张——对于错失“内部价”的投资者来说更是过于夸张,那时候的阿里巴巴绝对是桩便宜的好买卖。

    通过这次IPO,阿里巴巴本身和它的那些所有者以每股68美元的价格发行了3.20亿股,投行方面有权按发行价再认购4800万股。那么,让我们从已经发行和可能发行的股票数量开始,它们的总量为3.68亿股,按每股68美元的水平计算,融资总额为250亿美元。但要知道,如果按93.89美元的收盘价发行,从而让阿里巴巴及其股东获得这些股票的全部价值,他们筹集到的就不是250亿美元,而是346亿。或者说,他们把96亿美元“当做了小费”,同时还向六家承销商支付了约3.50亿美元手续费。也就是说,阿里巴巴及其大股东用近100亿美元的成本筹集了250亿美元资金,相当于产生了40%的“销售费用”。华尔街的数学难道不美妙吗?

    那么,赢家和输家都是谁呢?作为一个整体,最大的赢家是对冲基金等机构,他们在一天之内实现了96亿美元的账面和现金收益。作为IPO的策划者,六家承销商也大赚了一笔。客户得到这96亿美元横财后,将用几周乃至几个月的时间把其中的30%以高额佣金的形式回馈承销商。也就是说,除了3.50亿美元的手续费,承销商还将获利29亿美元。别忘了阿里巴巴高层,他们给了自己按发行价认购2200万股的权力,这让他们也能在一天之内赚到5.70亿美元。

    It’s official. Alibaba’s IPO pop was stupendous, Wall Street’s favorite clients get billions of dollars in found money, investment banks will pocket billions from those grateful clients for orchestrating the windfall, and the owners who let it happen should be thoroughly ashamed.

    I almost forgot to mention: Now that we know—at least for now—the sheik’s ransom you’ll have to pay to own Alibaba stock, you should marvel at the show. But avoid the stock.

    On Friday, September 19, Alibaba shares closed its first day of trading at $93.89. The stock shot into the $90s right at the opening bell and pretty much stayed there all day, registering a gain by the 4 p.m. close of $25.89. That’s a pop of 38%, from the offering price of $68, the insider price that underwriters charged institutional investors and a small group of individuals just before Alibaba started trading. At $93.89, the Chinese e-commerce colossus now boasts a world-class market cap of $231.4 billion. Its valuation exceeds those of such market veterans as Oracle and Intel (both $177 billion), and Pfizer ($193 billion).

    This heavily hyped debut is a travesty in two respects. First, the euphoria over the gigantic opening-day jump masks what should be obvious: that every dollar someone earned in quick gains came from someone else’s pocket—and no one is talking about the losers, not even the losers themselves. Second, the valuation sets a benchmark for how much Alibaba has to earn in order to enrich investors. The Chinese e-commerce giant’s fabulous market cap makes the necessary climb quite steep; too steep for investors who missed the insider share price—the one time Alibaba really was a steal.

    In the IPO, Alibaba, the company itself, and several of its owners, sold 320 million shares at $68, and the investment bankers reserve the right to buy 48 million more shares at the offering price. So let’s start with the total shares already sold, and likely to be sold, at the $68 price. That’s 368 million shares. The offering will then raise $25 billion. Remember, if Alibaba and its shareholders had gotten full value for their shares at the closing price of $93.89, they would have collected not $25 billion, but $34.6 billion. So they left $9.6 billion “on the table.” They also paid around $350 million in fees to their six underwriters. So it cost Alibaba and big shareholders almost $10 billion to raise $25 billion; that’s the equivalent to a sales charge of 40%. Isn’t Wall Street math fabulous?

    So who are the winners and losers? As a group, the biggest winners are the hedge funds and other institutions that tallied $9.6 billion in paper and cash gains in a single day. As architects of the offering, the six underwriters are golden as well. They should recoup 30% of the $9.6 billion windfall handed to their clients in high commissions over the coming weeks and months. That’s $2.9 billion, in addition to $350 million in fees. Let’s not forget the managers, who granted themselves an option to buy 22 million shares at the offering price. Their one-day gains: $570 million.

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