Companies pay millions, whether IPO deal closes or not

Yes, time is money. But waiting to complete initial public offerings is costing local tech companies plenty of both — time and money.

Portsmouth, N.H.-based NitroSecurity Inc. two weeks ago withdrew its application to raise $55 million in an IPO, and the CEO says 10 months in the IPO pipeline cost the security software and hardware company about $1.3 million.

NitroSecurity has had plenty of company. A search of securities filings revealed that local technology firms — both those that registered for an IPO that went unfulfilled and those that have gone public in the past 18 months — incurred costs that ran as high as $4.2 million. The bulk of those expenses represented legal and accounting fees.

For companies that don’t ultimately go public, it’s a hefty price to pay for little return — and that doesn’t include the drain on a management team’s time and resources, say observers.