Sunday, 29 Nov 2020

Sequoia-backed Snowflake tests IPO investor appetite with wider losses

(Reuters) – Sequoia-backed Snowflake Inc on Monday published financial statements for the first time, revealing a surge in revenue growth and huge losses, as the cloud-based data warehouse firm prepares for a high-profile public listing in the coming weeks.

Snowflake confidentially filed to go public earlier this year, shortly after its last funding in February that valued it at over $12 billion. Sequoia owned an 8.4% stake in the company prior to the offering.

The debut here will mark yet another marquee public listing for a Silicon Valley startup, even as all eyes are on Airbnb, Palantir and DoorDash, all expected to go public before the end of the year.

The Silicon Valley unicorns are looking to ride the stunning recovery in U.S. capital markets from the COVID-19 pandemic that earlier this year forced several companies to postpone their debut.

Shares of recently listed online used car seller Vroom Inc and business intelligence platform ZoomInfo Technologies Inc have surged since May.

Snowflake posted a 173.7% jump in revenue to $264.7 million for the fiscal year ended January compared with last earlier, but net loss nearly doubled to $348.54 million from $178.03 million.

“Even though there are losses, Snowflake’s 100%-plus growth rate will attract investor interest,” said Kathleen Smith, principal at Renaissance Capital, a provider of institutional research and IPO ETFs.

She added the IPO market is healthy and Snowflake’s peers MongoDB, Okta and Splunk have produced strong returns for investors this year. Snowflake plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange, under the ticker SNOW.

According to data platform PitchBook, Snowflake has raised $1.4 billion till date from a wide range of investors such as Sequoia Capital, Altimeter Capital, ICONIQ and Redpoint Ventures.

Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan, Allen & Co and Citigroup are among the lead underwriters for the offering.

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