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Once a company starts trading publicly, how do they turn shares into cash that they can then use to grow their business?

From what I've read so far, it seems that pre-IPO an investment bank essentially buys the companies public shares, and that bank then sells them on the open market. Is the investment bank buying 100% of the newly issued public shares? And then depositing the cash equivalent into the companies bank account? Additionally, as the stock price rises and falls over the lifetime of the company how does that actually impact the companies bank balance?

It would seem as if there are far too many fluctuations on a minute-to-minute basis to be making adjustments to a bank balance sheet. Is the entire system just "on paper" in the end? If so how can a company leverage their "on paper" valuation to actually pay vendors, employees, etc.?

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    The company gets the money from the IPO, at which point the shares are out of their hands and owned by someone else now. Any subsequent changes in price are not directly relevant to their bank balance. – ceejayoz Mar 13 '17 at 2:00
  • One way is those employee stock purchase plans. – Pete B. Mar 13 '17 at 13:47
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how do they turn shares into cash that they can then use to grow their business?

Once a Company issues an IPO or Follow-On Public Offer, the company gets the Money.

Going over the list of question tagged IPO would help you with basics.

Specifically the below questions;
How does a company get money by going public in an IPO?
Why would a company care about the price of its own shares in the stock market?
Why would a stock opening price differ from the offering price?

From what I've read so far, it seems that pre-IPO an investment bank essentially buys the companies public shares, and that bank then sells them on the open market. Is the investment bank buying 100% of the newly issued public shares? And then depositing the cash equivalent into the companies bank account? Additionally, as the stock price rises and falls over the lifetime of the company how does that actually impact the companies bank balance?

Quite a bit on above is incorrect. Please read the answers to the question tagged IPO. Once an IPO is over, the company does not gain anything directly from the change in shareprice. There is indirect gain / loss.

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