Analyze your existing corporate and capital structure with your IPO advisers. Select structures that are simple and flexible, and can be adapted to the changing needs of a public company over time. In addition, re-examine your management structure, including management roles, responsibilities, authorities, and reporting structures.
You cannot do it alone. Going public is a big decision. The process involved requires specialized skills and experience. Bringing together a talented team from the inside—members of your board and company management—and from the outside (e.g., underwriters, lawyers, auditors, financial or tax advisers, investor relations) is a key element of a successful IPO.
The execution phase in the initial public offering process, from preparing the preliminary prospectus to finalizing the documents, is an intensive period of about three months. Many related activities also occur during this phase involving your advisers, management, and the regulators. You will want to maintain control throughout this process. A person on your team experienced in project management can help to manage and coordinate these activities.
In developing the offering, build on the research done when assessing whether the market is ready for you. This step involves making preliminary decisions about:
- The type of securities to be issued
- The number of securities to be issued
- The price at which they will be issued
- The exchanges where the securities will be traded—options available in Canada, and whether you would consider listing in the US.
Once your company is fully prepared to go public, read how to execute your IPO