Stock Watch: WebEx Soars in First Trading Day

WebEx Communications, Inc. (Nasdaq: WEBX) jumped 19 1/16 to 33 1/16 Friday, its first day of trading. The San Jose, California-based company sold 3.5 million shares through underwriters led by Goldman, Sachs & Co.

WebEx technology helps companies hold meetings and share software over the Internet, with no special equipment required. In June, the company won a spot as the premier Web-conference provider for Yahoo! Inc.

Jeff Hirschkorn, senior market analyst at, said he was “impressed” by the stock’s gain. The company benefited from renewed demand for new issues in general, and from the fact that “hosting teleconferences and meetings over the Web is an interesting marketplace,” Hirschkorn told the E-Commerce Times.

Still, Hirschkorn does not expect e-commerce companies that are looking to go public to do very well, as many of last year’s high fliers are trading below their IPO prices. The B2B and B2C sectors are “still overplayed,” he said. “I think that’s going to continue down the road.”

Though WebEx admits it competes in a “rapidly evolving and intensely competitive” industry, it hopes to win new customers with its technology to “meeting-enable” companies’ own Web sites. The $49 million in proceeds from the IPO will be used for general corporate purposes, according to the prospectus.

WebEx lost $14.37 million on revenue of $2.6 million in 1999.

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