Initial public offering could come as soon as March and value Snapchat at $20bn to $25bn, making it one of the biggest technology offerings in recent years
California, November 16, 2016: Messaging app Snapchat has filed confidentially with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for an initial public offering (IPO), sources familiar with the situation said on Tuesday.
The filing puts the Venice, California-based company one step further towards its IPO, which sources say could come as soon as March and value it at $20bn to $25bn, making it one of the biggest technology offerings in recent years.
Under Americaâ€™s Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act, companies with less than $1bn in revenue can secretly file for an IPO, allowing them to quietly test investor appetite while keeping financials confidential.
The sources asked not to be named because the information is private. A spokesman for Snap, Snapchatâ€™s parent company, declined to comment.
Snapchat started in 2012 as a free mobile app that allows users to send photos that vanish within seconds. It has more than 100 million active users, about 60% of whom are aged 13 to 24, making it an attractive way for advertisers to reach millennials.
Awash in venture funding, the company raised $1.81bn in May, which valued it at about $20bn, media reports said at the time.
But investors worry that Snapchatâ€™s advertising sales, which began last October, is the companyâ€™s only significant revenue source.
A line of more than 100 people quickly formed in front of a vending machine on a Venice, California, boardwalk where the glasses were being sold.
The companyâ€™s investors include General Atlantic, Sequoia Capital, T Rowe Price and Lone Pine. Previous rounds included Fidelity Investment, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Yahoo.
Earlier this month, Alphabetâ€™s venture capital arm CapitalG, earlier known as Google Capital, disclosed an investment in Snapchat by adding the social networking firmâ€™s logo to a page on its investment portfolio website.