WINDERMERE, Fla. ( Stockpickr) -- The Internet boom is back! I almost can't believe my eyes.
The much-anticipated IPO for LinkedIn (LNKD - Get Report) hit the market yesterday, and investors bid the stock up in a frenzy. LinkedIn operates an online professional network designed to help members find jobs, connect with other professionals and locate business opportunities. The site has grown to reach 90 million users in some 200 countries since its launch in 2003.
Shares of LinkedIn skyrocketed as high as $122.70 a share yesterday, over 150%, as the stock began trading on the New York Stock Exchange and were recently changing hands at around $102 a share, giving the company an unbelievable market cap of over $8 billion. To put things into perspective, companies with a similar market cap include Walter Energy (WLT), Hormel Foods (HRL), Electronic Arts (ERTS) and Harley-Davidson (HOG). The big difference here is that these companies actually make billions in profits.
In 2010, LinkedIn doubled revenue to $243 million, and net income was $15.4 million, compared with a loss of $4 million a year earlier. For the first quarter in 2011, revenue doubled to $94 million, and net income jumped 14% to $2.1 million from the same period a year ago. The company has said it doesn't expect to be profitable in 2011 because it plans on investing its IPO proceeds in future growth initiatives.Related: Debt-Free Stocks That Could Get Squeezed Higher LinkedIn's initial IPO price was set to be $45 a share, which was bullish for the business-oriented networker since it was at the top end of the range between $42 and $45 a share. This was well above the previous IPO pricing range of $32 to $35. The market blew the doors off this one, pricing the stock over $80 a share once it initially started trading. This demonstrates that there is big demand on Wall Street for pure-play social networking stocks. It also shows that animal spirits are back in the markets for Internet stocks at any valuation, considering that shares of LinkedIn are now trading at over 500 times earnings. This is troubling, but as traders there are going to be lots of opportunities that come our way based off of the action in LinkedIn today. Here are a number of social networking stocks that could be poised to trade substantially higher now that the sector is in focus.