Tuesday , September 29 2020

Software firms gear up to reveal books ahead of busy IPO season


Silicon Valley software notables — Unity Technologies Inc., Snowflake Inc. and Asana Inc. — are set to disclose their financials as soon as next week ahead of September trading debuts, according to people familiar with their plans.
Palantir Technologies Inc., which also is planning to go public in late September through a direct listing, is nearing disclosure of its financial results and other details of its business, said people familiar with that matter, who like the others asked not to be identified because the companies’ plans were private.
It’s shaping up to be one of the busiest falls ever in the US for venture-backed technology exits on the stock market. Adding to the spate of upcoming listings, Airbnb Inc. said it has filed its IPO registration confidentially with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The long-awaited IPO could happen as soon as the fourth quarter.
Software listings remain a sweet spot within the technology sector, which has fared better than any other through the coronavirus pandemic this year. The 18 companies in the space that have gone public on US exchanges this year have climbed about 91% since their debut on a weighted-average basis, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Overall, newly listed companies excluding blank-check firms and real estate investment trusts have risen only 52% since their IPOs, the data show.
Unity, a developer of software used to design video games, will seek to be valued at more than $10 billion in a listing next month. Its shares are now trading above that mark on the secondary market.
Snowflake is expected to be valued at perhaps far more than $10 billion in an IPO, one of the people said. The Financial Times reported the valuation could be as high as $20 billion. a rep
Asana, which is planning to bypass a traditional IPO through a direct listing next month, has been trading on secondary market at a value of about $5 billion, Bloomberg News previously reported.
The secondary market valuation is an important element of a company’s price discovery process in a direct listing, because no new shares are sold.
Representatives for Unity and Asana didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. A spokesperson for snowflake declined to comment.
Palantir, according to people with knowledge of its confidentially filed listing documents, lost $579 million on revenue of $742 million in 2019. Palantir reported $488 million in revenue during the first six months of 2020, an amount expected to be higher in the second half of the year because the company has historically booked roughly 60% of revenue during the fourth quarter when government contracts are finalized, said one of the people.

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