Category: IPO

The World’s Biggest Startups: Top Unicorns of 2021


This post is by Omri Wallach from Visual Capitalist


The World’s Biggest Startups: Top Unicorns of 2021

Many entrepreneurs start businesses around the world, but only the most successful new companies become “unicorns”—the biggest startups with a valuation above $1 billion.

Some unicorns are little-known companies making quiet but impactful strides in software, healthcare, automotive, and other fields. Others have already become well-known industry leaders, like aerospace manufacturer SpaceX and game developer and publisher Epic Games.

In total, there are more than 800 unicorn startups globally. That said, this visualization specifically hones in on the world’s decacorns (unicorns with valuations above $10 billion) as of December 2021 according to CB Insights.

Private Startups Valued at Over $10 Billion

The world’s most prominent unicorns constantly see their valuations change as they enter different rounds of funding or maturity.

In December 2021, there were 35 startups with a valuation above $10 billion, spread out across different countries and industries.

CompanyValuationCountryCategory
Bytedance$140BChinaArtificial intelligence
SpaceX$100.3BU.S.Other
Stripe$95BU.S.Fintech
Klarna$45.6BSwedenFintech
Canva$40BAustraliaInternet software & services
Instacart$39BU.S.Supply chain, logistics, & delivery
Databricks$38BU.S.Data management & analytics
Revolut$33BUKFintech
Nubank$30BBrazilFintech
Epic Games$28.7BU.S.Other
Chime$25BU.S.Fintech
FTX$25BChina (Hong Kong)Fintech
BYJU's$21BIndiaEdtech
Xiaohongshu$20BChinaE-commerce & direct-to-consumer
J&T Express$20BIndonesiaSupply chain, logistics, & delivery
Fanatics$18BU.S.E-commerce & direct-to-consumer
Yuanfudao$15.5B (Read more...)

Triggered Disclosures: Escaping the Disclosure Dilemma



In a post a few weeks ago, I argued that the disclosure process had lost its moorings, as corporate disclosures (annual filings, prospectuses for IPOs) have become more bulky, while also become less informative. I argued that some of this disclosure complexity could be attributed to the law of unintended consequences, with good intentions driving bad disclosure rules, and that some of it is deliberate, as companies use disclosures to confuse and confound, rather than to inform. For those of you who agreed with my thesis, the end game looks depressing, as new interest groups push for even more disclosures on their preferred fronts, with the strongest pressure coming from the environmental, social and governance (ESG) contingent. In this post, I propose one way out of the disclosure dilemma, albeit one with little chance of being adopted by the SEC or any other regulatory group, where you can have your cake (more disclosure on relevant items) and eat it too (without drowning in disclosure). 

The Disclosure Dilemma: Disease and Diagnosis

    For those of you who did not read my first post on disclosures, let me summarize its key points. The first is that company disclosures have become more bulky over time, whether it be in the form on required filings (like annual reports or 10K/10Q filings in the US) or prospectuses for initial public offerings.  The second is that these disclosures have become less readable and more difficult to navigate, partly because they are so bulky, and partly (Read more...)

The Indian Smartphone Revolution: Paytm’s Coming of Age IPO!



A few weeks ago, I valued Zomato, the Indian online food delivery company, just prior to its IPO, and argued that the excitement about its potential was tied to the potential for growth in India and the shifting habits of Indian consumers. Since its public offering, Zomato's stock price has reflected that excitement, more than doubling from its offering price of 74 rupees per share. Waiting in the wings for its public debut, is Paytm, a company that in many ways is even more closely tied to India's macro story, drawing on the growth of online commerce in India and a willingness of Indian consumers to use mobile payment mechanisms. In this post, I will look at the levers that drive Paytm's value, and you can make your judgments on where you think this offering will lead in terms of valuation and pricing. 

Setting the Table

As the Paytm IPO speeds to offering date, it is worth looking back at its relatively short history as a company, and how much change has been packed into that period. Since so much of Paytm’s success has been driven by the rise if smart phone usage among Indian consumers, and the concurrent rise in mobile payments for goods and services, I will start with a review of that rise, before looking at how Paytm has put itself in position to take advantage of that market shift.

The Rise of the Indian Smartphone User

India was late to join the smart phone party, held (Read more...)

Freshworks’ valuation could crest $10B in upcoming IPO



Earlier today, TechCrunch examined the new IPO price range for Toast. The U.S. software-and-fintech company moved its valuation materially higher in anticipation of pricing tomorrow after the bell and trading on Wednesday. It was not alone in doing so.

Freshworks is also targeting a higher IPO price range, it disclosed today in a fresh SEC filing. The customer service-focused software firm now expects to charge between $32 and $34 per share in its debut, up from the $28 to $32 per-share range that it initially disclosed.

Doing some back-of-the-envelope math, Freshworks’ IPO valuation could just pass the $10 billion mark, calculated on a fully diluted basis. Its simple IPO valuations, while rising, are lower than that figure.

Mathing that out, Freshworks expects to have 284,283,200 shares outstanding when public, inclusive of its underwriters’ option, but not inclusive of vested shares present in RSUs or options. At its new IPO price range, Freshworks would be worth between $9.1 billion and $9.7 billion.

Toast raises IPO price range, providing a Monday bump to fintech valuations



U.S. technology unicorn Toast filed a new S-1 document this morning detailing a higher IPO price range for its shares. The more expensive range indicates that Toast may be worth more in its debut than it initially expected, a bullish sign for technology companies more broadly.

Toast’s rising valuation may provide a boon to two different sub-sectors of technology: software and fintech. The restaurant-focused Toast sells software on a recurring basis (SaaS) to restaurants while also providing financial technology solutions. And while it is best known as a software company that dabbles in hardware, Boston-based Toast generates the bulk of its aggregate top line from financial services.

Software revenues are valuable thanks to their high margins and recurring structure. Toast’s financial-services revenues, by contrast, are largely transaction-based and sport lower gross margins. The company’s IPO price, then, could help the private markets more fairly price startups offering their own blend of software-and-fintech incomes.

The so-called “vertical SaaS” model, in which startups build software tailored to one particular industry or another, has become a somewhat two-part business effort; many startups today are pursuing both the sale of software along with fintech revenues. Toast’s IPO, then, could operate as a bellwether of sorts for a host of startups.

To see Toast raise its range, therefore, got our eyebrows up. Let’s talk money.

Toast’s new IPO range

From a previous range of $30 to $33, Toast now expects to price its IPO between $34 and $36.

Toast now expects its IPO price (Read more...)

Inside GitLab’s IPO filing



While the technology and business world worked towards the weekend, developer operations (DevOps) firm GitLab filed to go public. Before we get into our time off, we need to pause, digest the company’s S-1 filing, and come to some early conclusions.

GitLab competes with GitHub, which Microsoft purchased for $7.5 billion back in 2018.

The company is notable for its long-held, remote-first stance, and for being more public with its metrics than most unicorns — for some time, GitLab had a November 18, 2020 IPO target in its public plans, to pick an example. We also knew when it crossed the $100 million recurring revenue threshold.

Considering GitLab’s more recent results, a narrowing operating loss in the last two quarters is good news for the company.

The company’s IPO has therefore been long expected. In its last primary transaction, GitLab raised $286 million at a post-money valuation of $2.75 billion, per Pitchbook data. The same information source also notes that GitLab executed a secondary transaction earlier this year worth $195 million, which gave the company a $6 billion valuation.

Let’s parse GitLab’s growth rate, its final pre-IPO scale, its SaaS metrics, and then ask if we think it can surpass its most recent private-market price. Sound good? Let’s rock.

The GitLab S-1

GitLab intends to list on the Nasdaq under the symbol “GTLB.” Its IPO filing lists a placeholder $100 million raise estimate, though that figure will change when the company sets an initial price range for its (Read more...)

Swedish caller-identification service Truecaller seeks to raise over $100 million in IPO



Truecaller, which operates an eponymous caller-identification service, said on Wednesday it is looking to raise $116 million in an initial public offering on Nasdaq Stockholm.

The 12-year-old Stockholm-headquartered firm, which counts India as its biggest market by users, is aiming for a valuation of about $3 billion in the IPO, according to earlier local media reports. The company said it plans to do its listing by fourth quarter of this year.

The firm, which has amassed 278 million monthly active users, has been working on its initial public offering for at least two years, according to TechCrunch’s past conversations with Truecaller co-founder and chief executive Alan Mamedi.

The firm counts Sequoia Capital and Atomica among its earlier investors. It has raised over $95 million over the years, according to Crunchbase. Six years ago, the firm engaged with some investors to raise an additional $100 million at a valuation of $1 billion, TechCrunch reported, but the deal never materialized.

“One of our objectives this year has been to prepare Truecaller for an IPO. Thanks to the strong feedback that we’ve received from potential investors, it feels very exciting to take the next step in this process. A listing of Truecaller is not only a milestone for Nami [the other co-founder], myself and all of our employees who have contributed to building Truecaller to the fantastic platform that it is today, but also to the growing Swedish tech ecosystem,” he said in a statement Wednesday.

“Even though we are twelve (Read more...)

What to make of Freshworks’ first IPO price range



Two major private tech companies announced IPO price ranges this morning, with Toast targeting a market value of nearly $18 billion at the top end of its range and Freshworks looking to price its equity between $28 and $32 per share. TechCrunch calculates that the company would be worth around $8.9 billion at $32 per share, not employing a fully diluted share count.

Inclusive of shares represented by fully vested options and the like, Freshworks’ valuation could reach $9.6 billion, Renaissance Capital reports.

Unlike Toast, with a revenue mix including four distinct products, Freshworks is a more straightforward software company. That means we can do much more interesting work to understand its valuation. So, this morning, let’s unpack how Freshworks is considering valuing itself in its IPO at its present range, look at some market comps, and come to a conclusion regarding whether or not we expect the unicorn to raise its valuation before it floats.

Lies, damned lies and revenue multiples

As a refresher, in the first half of 2021 (Q1 and Q2), Freshworks posted revenues of $168.9 million. That annualizes to $337.9 million, thanks to numerical rounding.

At a valuation of $9.6 billion — recall that simple IPO valuations for the company and lower share-price points from its IPO range generate lower valuations and therefore more conservative multiples than what we’ll be discussing here — Freshworks would be worth 28.4x its current revenue run rate, set during H1 2021.