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WR Hambrecht + CO

WR Hambrecht + Co was founded in January 1998 to level the playing field for investors and our corporate clients. Founder and Chairman, Bill Hambrecht, is a Silicon Valley pioneer who has been financing growth companies from Apple to Google during his time at Hambrecht & Quist and WRH+Co. The firm’s auction technology has changed the traditional investment banking landscape by allowing the market itself to determine pricing and allocations.

Throughout our history, WRH+Co has been an innovative leader with a core philosophy based on three tenets:


  • identifying exceptional companies

  • helping them raise capital and go public early

  • delivering efficient market pricing

Image by Arnaud Mariat

Our Story

WR Hambrecht + Co was founded by William Hambrecht, who previously founded investment bank Hambrecht & Quist that went public in 1996 and was acquired by Chase Manhattan in 1999. For more than 50 years Hambrecht has specialized in identifying early disruptive companies and helping them grow.

For more than 50 years, WR Hambrecht +Co team members have provided billions of dollars in early growth capital to more than 500 companies.

We strive to work with companies that have compelling growth opportunities, including those that are deemed “too small” to go public. It has long been our conviction that access to public capital enables growth companies to focus on innovation while providing an opportunity for all classes of investors to participate.


To accomplish this, we have created products like the OpenIPO auction and influenced regulation change for small issuers, to help companies achieve more transparent market pricing. The OpenIPO® auction, for example, levels the playing field in initial public offerings, allowing individuals and institutional investors to bid online for shares of an IPO. All investors end up paying the same price — a price determined by the auction.


We were also a pioneer and advocate for the Regulation A exemption that created a new option for early-stage growth companies to access public markets through the A+ IPO.

Our Auction IPO Clients

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Joe Mansueto, Chairman & CEO of Morningstar

“ We were extremely pleased with the way our auction turned out. It's definitely a better process that provides transparency of bids, equal access to share allocations for all investors, fair issue pricing and lower issuer costs. WR Hambrecht + Co did an outstanding job for us.”

Zachary Nelson, CEO of NetSuite, Inc.

“ The auction was an enormous success.”

Thomas Peterffy, Chairman, CEO and President of Interactive Brokers Group, Inc.

“ We chose the auction process because it gives everybody an equal chance to participate.”

Eric Schmidt CEO, Google Inc.

Harvard Business Review, May 2010

“For a CEO, outcomes are what matters most….We made the decision to go public,
and Google ended up succeeding beyond our most optimistic dreams.”

OpenIPO vs. The Street: A Self-selecting Process

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