As we ease into 2019, here are five potential IPOs on the cards which tech enthusiasts should keep a close eye on.
The photo discovery and sharing platform is predicting revenue to hit the $1 billion mark in 2019, for the first time since it launched in 2010. While this is not in the same league as Facebook, it is believed that the user demographic (predominantly mothers and women) along with their proprietary mobile search data will enable them to push towards a valuation of $13-15 billion when they seek to IPO later this year. It’s most recent funding round, from mid-2017, put the company’s worth at $12.3 billion.
After a turbulent few years, including the resignation of founder and CEO Travis Kalanick in 2017 amid accusations of sexual harassment at the company and regulatory problems in major cities such as London, Uber has reportedly confidentially filed for IPO.
Expectations are that this will come in the second half of the year, giving the business more chance to demonstrate to investors they have addressed the issues that have dogged them recently.
Valued at $76 billion at last funding in early 2018, they will be looking to substantially increase on this and move towards $120 billion (and dwarf their smaller rivals Lyft, who have publicly announced an IPO for this year).
CEO and co-founder Brian Chesky has announced that Airbnb will seek to IPO in 2019, with a target valuation in the region of $31 billion.
The holiday rentals site has begun to broaden its offering, with users now able to book experiences on the platform – a reflection of their goal of becoming a global travellers hub that stretches beyond accommodation provision and into creating an international community.
There have been suggestions that, like Spotify’s IPO in 2018, Airbnb will go for a direct listing which will enable them to sell shares directly to the public rather than using banking intermediaries.
The workplace messaging service, which boasts a loyal following and strong B2B brand, hired Goldman Sachs in December 2018 to lead its IPO effort.
Valued at just over $7 billion at last fundraising in August 2018, the company has around 8 million users currently, of whom 3 million are paying users. It’s 2017 annual recurring revenue (ARR) was $200 million and this is expected to double each year.
Although Deliveroo’s CEO Will Shu claimed in May 2018 that an IPO was not on the cards in the foreseeable future, there is strong speculation that the British food delivery service could go public in 2019 as it seeks to get ahead of rival Uber (whose mooted merger with Deliveroo in 2018 failed to materialise).
There have also been reports of further fundraising of up to $500 million in Q1 2019 to push the company’s valuation towards the $4 billion mark, before they go to the markets.