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SINGAPORE (July 29): The crash-and-burn IPO of Pets.com at the height of the tech bubble in February 2000 was a seminal moment in global corporate history. The online pet food retailer had chalked up a mere US$619,000 in sales in the year ahead of its IPO, yet commanded US$330 million in market capitalisation at its listing debut. Selling products for a third of what you pay for them clearly does not make a viable business model. Not surprisingly, then, within weeks, Pets.com had gone bust and has been the butt of investors’ jokes ever since.

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