Investors who owned stocks in the past year and a half generally experienced some big gains. In fact, the SPDR S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) total return since Dec. 7, 2018 is 21.4%.
But Dec. 7, 2018 was the date Moderna Inc (NASDAQ:MRNA) held its IPO, and Moderna investors have made a killing ever since.
Moderna’s Big Debut: Biotech giant Moderna was founded in 2010 and made the move to go public roughly nine years later. It priced its IPO at $23 per share back in December 2018. Moderna sold approximately 26.3 million shares at that price, raising about $604.3 million total.
The IPO shattered the record for largest biotech IPO in history previously held by Allogene Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:ALLO) at $324 million.
After selling IPO shares at $23, Moderna shares got off to a rough start on the public market, dropping down to $13.03 in the weeks following its IPO. However, the stock bounced off that level as investors rushed in to buy the dip.
Moderna shares peaked at $29.79 in mid-2019 before a late-year sell-off dropped them all the way back down to their all-time low of $11.54 in August 2019 .
COVID-19 Outbreak: From that point forward, Moderna shares took off like a rocket and never looked back. The biggest catalyst for Modena shares has been the 2020 COVID-19 outbreak.
Optimism surrounding the company’s promising mRNA-1273 COVID-19 vaccine candidate propelled the stock above the $30 level in March, above the $50 level in April and to a new all-time high of $87 in May.
2020 And Beyond: Moderna shares have since pulled back to around $64, but 2018 IPO investors have still made a killing.
In fact, $1,000 worth of Moderna IPO stock would be worth about $2,794 today.
Looking ahead, analysts expect Moderna to get back to its all-time high in the next 12 months. The average price target among the 12 analysts covering the stock is $87 suggesting 35.4% upside from current levels.