Two initial public offerings rose in their Thursday debuts as the broader U.S. market fell.
A third offering was cut and delayed, a sign that the market for new issues is still uncertain.
Shares in oil and natural gas exploration company Oasis Petroleum Inc , the largest deal of the week, rose 6.4 percent above their IPO price to $14.89 on the New York Stock Exchange early Thursday afternoon.
Higher One Holdings Inc , which provides banking services to colleges and college students, climbed 18 percent ahead of its IPO price to $14.05, also on the NYSE.
U.S. stocks fell on worries about a slowing economic recovery and the Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 0.26 percent to 1,111.69 [ID:nLDE65G25S]. A third company, mobile Internet and data services seller Motricity Inc , cut the value of its IPO and delayed the pricing by a day.
Houston-based Oasis Petroleum's offering could have been helped by BP Plc's Gulf woes and its low debt load, IPO Boutique Senior Managing Partner Scott Sweet said.
Oasis Petroleum is leasing land in the Williston Basin in Montana and North Dakota. It said in its prospectus that it had an estimated 13.3 million barrels of oil equivalent net proved reserves as of December 31.
The Williston Basin includes oil shale and other oil and gas assets. Shale oil is more expensive to produce but some analysts have speculated that possible offshore regulations could spur increased shale oil development.
There are certainly mitigating circumstances that propelled Oasis to a premium -- like the Gulf, said Sweet.
Private equity-backed Oasis raised about $588 million by selling 42 million shares for $14 each. Even though the company has been losing money since its inception in 2007 -- it most recently posted a net loss of $3.23 million on revenue of $20.07 million in the three months ended March 31 -- it has a relatively small debt load, Sweet said.
As of December 31 Oasis Petroleum had total assets of $239.55 million and total liabilities of $67.70 million. The company said it would use proceeds from the offering to repay debt and for exploration and development.
Private equity funds affiliated with EnCap sold a portion of their stake.
STILL A TOUGH MARKET
Higher One, trading 18 percent above its IPO price, is ahead of typical first day pops of 10 to 15 percent, but the company had cut the value of its offering by more than half, and even with the premium, is still trading below its anticipated price range.
Higher One had planned to sell 14.25 million shares for $15 to $17 each, but instead sold 9 million shares for $12 each.
The markets certainly are difficult, Chief Financial Officer and co-founder Mark Volchek said in an interview with Reuters.
We have a strong sales force, he added. We posted very strong sales results and we have the same team continuing to work on the company so with that we think we are in good shape to continue the growth.
Higher One's revenue and net income due to common shareholders more than doubled from a year earlier in the quarter that ended March 31, hitting $37.57 million and $1.71 million, respectively.
The company, whose services include financial aid disbursement and tuition payment, said it would use proceeds from the offering to repay debt, for costs associated with its acquisition of CASHNet and for general corporate purposes.
Investors in Higher One include Lightyear Capital, Club Circle Partners, North Hill Ventures and Hanseatic Americas LDC.
Motricity, which delayed the pricing of its IPO, also made concessions. It cut the value of its IPO by 39.1 percent, saying in a regulatory filing that it now hopes to sell 5.9 million shares instead of 6.75 million shares, and hopes to price the shares at $10 to $11, rather than $14 to $16.
Billionaire investor Carl Icahn, who controlled 18.5 percent of Motricity as of May 31, also said he may purchase up to one million shares in connection with the IPO, which is now expected to price on Thursday after the close of markets.
Underwriters on the Oasis offering were led by Morgan Stanley and UBS Investment Bank. Underwriters of the Higher One offering were led by Goldman Sachs & Co. JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs are leading the underwriters on the Motricity IPO.
(Reporting by Clare Baldwin; Additional reporting by Rodrigo Campos and Matt Daily; Editing by Maureen Bavdek and Richard Chang)