Vera Bradley Stock Has Wings; Shares Soar on Debut

By Peter Ambrose

October 22, 2010 Updated Oct 22, 2010 at 6:38 AM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind./New York City (Indiana's NewsCenter) - Investors will be watching the markets today to see if Vera Bradley's stock will continue to rise.

Shares in the Fort Wayne-based retailer and handbag manufacturer jumped 55.3% to close at nearly $25 a share yesterday - the first day Vera Bradley was traded on the Nasdaq. The stock price dipped slightly during overnight trading.

This came after the company raised $176 million by selling 11 million shares at $16 each during its Initial Public Offering on Wednesday.

Vera Bradley's strong debut is a punctuation mark on what's been a good year for the company. The Wall Street Journal reports Vera Bradley's net revenue increased 26% from higher sales in the 6 months that ended on July 31.

The Journal also says Vera Bradley's IPO and the successful IPO of another company, Columbus, OH-based Bravo Brio Restaurant Group Inc., could be positive signs for more initial public offerings by American companies. According to the report on The Wall Sttreet Journal's website, don't expect a flood of new IPOs. Instead, Vera Bradley and Bravo Brio's positive debut show "investors may be more willing to take a chance on initial public offerings tethered to an economic recovery."

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