Snapchat files for one of the biggest tech IPOs in years -sources | Reuters
By Lauren Hirsch and Liana B. Baker Snapchat has filed for an initial public offering, sources familiar with the situation said on Tuesday, which puts the messaging app a step closer to the biggest U.S. stock market debut since 2014.The Venice, California-based company could go public as soon as March and be valued at $20 billion to $25 billion, making it the largest IPO since Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's (BABA.N) went public two years ago valued at $170.9 billion.
By Lauren Hirsch and Liana B. Baker
Snapchat has filed for an initial public offering, sources familiar with the situation said on Tuesday, which puts the messaging app a step closer to the biggest U.S. stock market debut since 2014.The Venice, California-based company could go public as soon as March and be valued at $20 billion to $25 billion, making it the largest IPO since Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's (BABA.N) went public two years ago valued at $170.9 billion. It would be the largest U.S. technology IPO since Facebook Inc's (FB.O) debut in 2012 with a value of $81.2 billion.Snapchat filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission under the U.S. Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act. Companies with less than $1 billion in revenue can secretly file for an IPO, allowing them to quietly test investor appetite while keeping financials confidential. The filing was made before Republican Donald Trump's unexpected victory in the U.S. presidential election on Nov. 8 which has increased uncertainty in global markets, but the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI has hit record highs for four straight sessions.The sources asked not to be named because the information is private. A spokesman for Snap Inc, Snapchat's parent company, declined to comment.Reuters was first to report news of the confidential filing.
BELLWETHER FOR 'DECACORNS'
A Snapchat IPO is seen by many investors as a bellwether for many of the largest so-called "unicorns," private, venture-backed companies that are valued at more than $1 billion. Nicknamed "decacorns," these companies are valued in the tens of billions of dollars and include Snapchat, car-sharing company Uber Technologies Inc [UBER.UL] and home-sharing company Airbnb. No decacorn has yet tested the public market, and it is unproven whether they can beat or even replicate such astronomic valuations with more scrutinizing public investors. The market for technology IPOs for this year has been rocky, with investors left skittish due to volatile technology stock performance and uneven returns from recent IPOs. Year to date, 123 U.S. technology companies have gone public, raising $7.1 billion, a 58 percent decline in proceeds and 20 percent drop in the number of offerings from this time last year.
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 percent of whom are aged 13 to 24, making it an attractive way for advertisers to reach millennials.Awash in venture funding, the company raised $1.81 billion in May, which valued it at about $20 billion, media reports said at the time. But investors worry that Snapchat's advertising sales, which began last October, is the company's only significant revenue source.
Snap in September starting describing itself as a camera company and earlier this month it debuted its $130 video-camera sunglasses. The glasses are equipped with a camera that connects wirelessly to a smartphone to take and send "snaps" - the company's terms for video and photo messages sent on its app. According to postings on Twitter, 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 company's investors include General Atlantic, Sequoia Capital, T. Rowe Price and Lone Pine. Previous rounds included Fidelity Investment, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Yahoo Inc (YHOO.O).Earlier this month, Alphabet Inc's (GOOGL.O) venture capital arm CapitalG, earlier known as Google Capital, disclosed an investment in Snapchat by adding the social networking firm's logo to a page on its investment portfolio website. (Reporting by Lauren Hirsch in New York and Liana B. Baker in San Francisco; Additional reporting by Matthew Toole in New York; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Nate Raymond | NEW YORK NEW YORK U.S.
ZURICH Geneva prosecutors have opened legal proceedings against a suspended Credit Suisse banker accused of violating his fiduciary duties in a case brought by wealthy Turkish families who say they lost 300 million Swiss francs ($296 million), SonntagsZeitung reported.Two independent Turkish asset managers who oversaw money for wealthy clients that was deposited in Credit Suisse accounts are suspected of illegally covering up losses linked to the Turkish lira's collapse in 2013, the newspaper reported.The suspended Credit Suisse employee is blamed for not halting transactions made by the Turkish asset managers, even after significant deficits piled up, the newspaper reported."These continued, extraordinary losses should have alarmed the bank," a lawyer for one of the wealthy Turks who lost money in the alleged scam told SonntagsZeitung.A phone call seeking comment from the Geneva prosecutors office was not answered late Sunday afternoon.The suspended Credit Suisse banker, whom the newspaper said faces prison should he be convicted in Geneva courts, contends he did nothing wrong and that he cleared transactions with his superiors. "My client denies all the accusations," his lawyer told the newspaper.Credit Suisse said no criminal proceeding had been opened against the bank
LONDON German Chancellor Angela Merkel's coalition partners on Monday accused her of running out of ideas after she announced she would stand for a fourth term in next year's parliamentary election.The centre-left Social Democrats (SPD), junior partner to Merkel's conservatives in their ruling "grand coalition", accused the chancellor of a "pretty feeble performance" in announcing her candidacy on Sunday evening.By saying she will seek a fourth term, Merkel has effectively fired the starting gun on campaigning for the election in September next year, though she must govern with the SPD until then."I can't see how Angela Merkel wants to improve this country and prepare it for future challenges," SPD Secretary General Katarina Barley told reporters, adding that Merkel had run out of steam after 11 years in office."I think Mrs Merkel has her merits, but she doesn't stand for the future anymore," said Manuela Schwesig who sits in Merkel's cabinet as minister of family affairs. The SPD politician was answering a question whether she experienced Merkel as being feeble in the cabinet, too