An initial public offering (IPO) is the first time a private firm makes its shares available to the general public. In some informal contexts, the phrase "going public" may also be used to describe IPOs. Many businesses choose to do an IPO in order to allow shareholders to sell their shares to the general public. Startup businesses, expanding businesses, or business owners in need of capital frequently select the IPO option to generate money for future projects. A committee of financial and regulatory specialists should be established before making an IPO to audit all essential procedures. After a firm has completed its initial public offering, it can still decide to raise more money in the future by doing secondary offers. Being a publicly traded company has advantages of its own, such as making staff stockholders, which would likely increase their motivation to work. Making an IPO could, in some cases, improve a company's legitimacy and reputation. However, following an IPO, the company's value will probably be determined by the value of its stock, which could obscure the actual performance. Additionally, some businesses might falsely inflate the value of their stocks, which could later cause issues. IPO vs. ICO Despite being frequently used interchangeably, IPOs and ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings) are two very separate things. IPOs typically relate to existing enterprises that sell shares of a portion of their company to raise money. On the other side, ICOs are mostly used as a fundraising tool that enables businesses to raise money for their project at the beginning (investors are not purchasing any equity in the business). The IPOs are also heavily controlled by governmental agencies and, generally speaking, function effectively in centralized settings. For ICOs, on the other hand, there is less regulation and the dangers are typically significantly larger.