initial public offerings

Robinhood seeks up to $35-billion valuation in mega US IPO


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Robinhood seeks up to $35-billion valuation in mega US IPO

ROBINHOOD. The Robinhood logo is seen on a smartphone in this illustration taken July 2, 2021.

Dado Ruvic/Reuters

Shares of online brokerage Robinhood Markets are expected to be priced between $38 and $42

Robinhood Markets is targeting a valuation of up to $35 billion in its initial public offering (IPO) in the United States, the company revealed in a filing on Monday, July 19, setting the stage for one of the highly anticipated stock market listings of the year.

The listing plans come just months after the online brokerage found itself at the center of a confrontation between a new generation of retail investors and Wall Street hedge funds in late January.

Robinhood was aiming for an IPO valuation of up to $40 billion, Reuters had previously reported.

About 55 million shares are being offered in the IPO to raise over $2.3 billion. Nearly 2.63 million of those shares are being offered by the company’s founders and chief financial officer, the filing showed. Proceeds from those will not go to Robinhood.

Shares are expected to be priced between $38 and $42, the company said.

Salesforce Ventures, the investment arm of software provider, is looking to purchase up to $150 million worth of Class A common stock at the IPO price, the filing showed.

Robinhood was founded in 2013 by Stanford University roommates Vlad Tenev and Baiju Bhatt. They will hold a majority of the voting power after the offering, the filing showed, with Bhatt having around 39% of the voting power of outstanding stock while Tenev will hold about 26.2%.

The company’s platform allows users to make unlimited commission-free trades in stocks, exchange-traded funds, options, and cryptocurrencies. Its easy-to-use interface made it a go-to for young investors trading from home during coronavirus-induced restrictions and its popularity has soared over the past 18 months.

The trading mania in the so-called meme stocks helped fuel a fourfold jump in its revenue over January to March, Robinhood’s IPO filing earlier this month detailed, but the quick expansion came at a cost.

The company faced criticism after it was forced to curb trading in the middle of the surge this year in GameStop and other previously beaten-down stocks.

At the time, Robinhood was forced to raise $3.4 billion in emergency funds after its finances were strained by the massive jump in retail trading and a resulting jump in capital demands from clearing houses.

That round valued the company at around $30 billion, according to people familiar with matter.

Robinhood’s stock market flotation comes amid a record 15-month run for the US IPO market, as investors rushed to buy shares of high-growth tech companies.

The company plans to list on the Nasdaq under the symbol HOOD.

Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan are the lead underwriters for the offering. –

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