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As Roblox began to trade today, the company’s shares shot above its reference price of $45 per share. Currently, Roblox is trading at $71.10 per share, up just over 60% from the reference price that it announced last night. That effort finally set a directional value of sorts on Roblox’s shares before it floated on the public markets. 

Roblox, a gaming company aimed at children and powered by an internal economy and third-party development activity, has had a tumultuous if exciting path to the public markets. The company initially intended to list in a traditional IPO, but after enthusiastic market conditions sent the value of some public-offering shares higher after they began to trade, Roblox hit pause.

The former startup then raised a Series H round of capital, a $520 million investment that boosted the value of Roblox from around $4 billion to $29.5 billion. TechCrunch jokes that, far from IPOs mispricing IPOs, that $4 billion price set in early 2020 was the real theft, given where the company was valued just a year later. Sure, the pandemic was good for Roblox, but seeing a 5x repricing in four quarters was hilarious.

Regardless. At $45 per share, Roblox’s direct listing reference price, the company was worth $29.1 billion, per Renaissance Capital, an IPO-focused group. Barron’s placed the number at $29.3 billion. No matter which is closer to the truth, they were both right next to the company’s final private price.

So, the (Read more...)