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BREAKING DOWN 'Initial Public Offering - IPO'
An IPO is also referred to as a public offering. When a company initiates the IPO process, a very specific set of events occurs. The chosen underwriters facilitate all of these steps.
• An external IPO team is formed, consisting of an underwriter, lawyers, certified public accountants (CPAs) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) experts.
• Information regarding the company is compiled, including financial performance and expected future operations. This becomes part of the company prospectus, which is circulated for review.
• The financial statements are submitted for official audit.
• The company files its prospectus with the SEC and sets a date for the offering.