August 24, 2009

IPO Closings: Reliving the Glory Days

Over the past few months, we’ve posted a total of five blogs telling stories about deal cubes and deal closings (here’s the latest one). Below is another story from a member about IPO closings (heartening to hear since there’s been a dearth of these deals over the past year):

Who says IPO closings can’t be eventful. On my first IPO (circa 1983 or 84), we were at the closing at Wertheim’s office in the Pan Am Building. The CFO takes a $400 million check from the underwriters (wire transfers were too unreliable back then). He leaves with his commercial banker to deposit the check and the lawyers stay behind to stack up documents.

The CFO returns 10 minutes later, ashen-faced, having lost the check! It was eventually returned a couple hours later – someone had found it on the floor in Grand Central Terminal. In the meantime, we dealt with such questions as to whether we had to call a board meeting to authorize the CFO to give an indemnity for the lost check or whether that was covered by the boilerplate “and such other actions” authority in the board resolutions; and whether a firm partner would give a legal opinion to that effect. Ah, them’s the days.