A framework for thinking objectively about post-IPO or concentrated stock holdings

Companies like Uber, Lyft, Beyond Meat, Peloton, Slack, Zoom and Pinterest all made public market debuts in 2019, developing wealth and liquidity for a lot of the 2019 IPO class of creators.

This year, shareholders have actually seen anxiety-inducing volatility in their holdings, leading numerous to recognize that they require to rethink their technique to their focused post-IPO stock position.

In this guide, I’ll stroll through a structure of how to think of focused or post-ipo stock holdings objectively. While this is composed specific to public business stock, a lot of the same basic principles apply to personal stock and the choice whether to sell. Some dangers must be comprehended if you are counting on one stock to attain all of your monetary objectives because that subjects you to having “a lot of eggs in one basket.” Numerous investors in the 2019 IPO class have actually experienced this threat over the last couple of months and are reviewing their scenarios.

Following my advice may be challenging considering that we all have actually heard of someone who made it huge by swinging for the fences. The secret is understanding the real success rate and risks included with this technique; it is all too typical to hear others share their standout success, while more common failures are rarely discussed.

What do I do now?

Typically, I promote for reducing focused positions in IPO stock upon lockup expiration, or via scheduled selling for more significant positions; nevertheless, for those that have not offered, it is clear that the unexpected macroeconomic slump has actually materially increased the volatility of some high-valuation business share costs. If you discover yourself in this position here are a few products to consider:

  1. What is your time horizon? Are your investments intended for the long term or the short-term?
  2. What are your liquidity requires? Do you require to raise cash to pay for taxes or upcoming costs? Do you need cash in the upcoming 1-2 years?
  3. What other possessions do you have?
  4. How does this impact your financial strategy? Can you endure possible additional declines?

It is not comfortable to be in this position, and choices at this point can be important in achieving long-lasting objectives. I recommend you discover an advisor to speak to if you are unsure what the best option is. Below we evaluate some factors to consider that can help construct more confidence in your decision.

What’s the strategy?

The choice of what to do with your stock needs to start at a greater level. Where does this stock fit into your financial investment strategy, and where does your financial investment method fit into accomplishing your long-term goals?

Your goals should drive your investment method, and your financial investment technique must drive the decisions concerning your stock, not the other method around. With the proper goals set, you can use the investment portfolio, and the business stock(s) within it, as tools to accomplish your goals.

A goal might be to work 10 more years, then partially retire and do some consulting. Defining objectives helps you make unbiased decisions on how to finest handle focused stock positions. There is a trade-off in between making the most of the prospective return in your investment portfolio, by maximizing danger with concentrated portfolios, and minimizing the danger of a disastrous loss, by having a well-diversified portfolio. This decision is special to each person. The very best method to optimize the odds of accomplishing your objectives is different from the best path to maximizing your portfolio’s return possibilities.


In these discussions, there is always a tremendous worry of losing out. What if this stock becomes a multibagger with time? It’s easy to look to the Zuckerbergs and Bezos of the world, who have collected fantastic wealth through holding concentrated stock, and think that holding a focused stock for the long term is the method to go.

There is likewise no doubt some public stocks have actually been runaway financial home runs, like purchasing Apple or Amazon. If you had actually invested in those stocks since the beginning, you might have made a 40,000% or 100,000% return. A reasonable, evidence-based decision process presents an extremely various picture. An analytical analysis on how IPOs and concentrated portfolios have fared in the past is covered in part 2 of this three-part series.

Concentration involves threats you may not have considered. In part 2, I will walk you through vital factors to consider when maintaining a high concentration of company stock and things to consider from a big-picture viewpoint. I also dive into the benefits of diversification, taking it beyond the essentials to reveal you the benefits of having a more balanced portfolio.

Article curated by RJ Shara from Source. RJ Shara is a Bay Area Radio Host (Radio Jockey) who talks about the startup ecosystem – entrepreneurs, investments, policies and more on her show The Silicon Dreams. The show streams on Radio Zindagi 1170AM on Mondays from 3.30 PM to 4 PM.