Snapchat owner prices IPO, seeks more than $2 bn

Screen Shot 2017 02 17

The Venice, CA-based company plans to raise $3.0 billion by offering 200 million shares (28% insider) at a price range of $14 to $16. You can't buy Snap stock just yet; the company is about to embark on what is known as a "road show", in which it meets with a variety of big investors and analysts to drum up interest in its shares.

The company confirmed these details in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The schedule shows that after starting in the Mid-Atlantic they will travel to London on Monday, followed by two days in NY.

Snap, which only launched its disappearing messages app in 2012 and generates most of its revenues from advertising, has since diversified into a camera company and started selling $130 video-recording glasses that shoot first-person footage.

Snap had a net loss of $514.6 million on $404 million in revenue for the year ending December 31, 2016, compared to a net loss of $372.9 million on $58.7 million in revenue in the prior year.

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The Snapchat app had 158 million average daily active users as of the fourth quarter of 2016. A year ago the company introduced its first hardware product, camera glasses called Spectacles that retail at $130. It plans to list on the NYSE under the symbol SNAP. Holders of class B stock are entitled to one vote, and it is convertible into one share of class A stock. The class C stock represents 88.5% of the voting power of the outstanding capital stock after the IPO. The company also said it is not "anticipating any material acquisitions" but may purchase some "complementary businesses, products or technologies".

Final valuation will depend on how investors view specific issues, including a recent dip in the growth rate of new users, the competitive landscape and the fact that the stock offering is structured so that Snap's leaders will retain significant control after the IPO, per an earlier Journal report.

Net losses widened to US$514.6 million from US$372.9 million in that period.

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