Thursday, May 30, 2024

Reddit Debuts on New York Stock Exchange, First Major Tech IPO Since Pinterest in 2019

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Update: Reddit is making its long-awaited public market debut on Thursday, under the ticker symbol “RDDT.” The company announced the pricing of its initial public offering (IPO) the day before, at $34 per share, which is on the high end of the $31 to $34 price Reddit had planned.

Reddit and its selling stockholders are selling 22 million shares at $34 a share, raising $748 million total for a valuation of about $6.4 billion.

Reddit was previously valued at $10 billion in a private fundraising round in 2021. It is the first major social media offering since Pinterest in 2019.

Original story from March 11:

Social media forum Reddit, which has been around for nearly two decades, is finally going public. An SEC filing released today shows that the company is aiming for a valuation of up to $6.4 billion in its upcoming initial public offering (IPO).

Reddit plans to sell 22 million shares at $31 to $34 per share, according to the filing. The company has marked out about 1.76 million shares for its most invested users.

Related: Reddit Offered 75,000 Users the Chance to Preregister for Shares Before Its IPO. The Reactions Were Pure Reddit.

Reddit recorded more than one billion posts and 16 billion comments in total from users through the end of last year, as per the filing. The site drew more than 500 million monthly visitors in December 2023 alone.

Reddit Inc. co-founder and CEO Steve Huffman. Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images

Semrush data reveals that Reddit was the third most visited website in the U.S. in December 2023, beating Facebook with a difference of about 535 million views. Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok lagged behind at 10th, 13th, and 17th place, respectively.

Reddit could be the first major tech IPO of 2024. The filing brings up the pros and cons of the platform and the value it offers to users and investors.

Reddit’s Value Throughout the filing, Reddit emphasized factors that set its platform apart from its competitors, with the word “trust” appearing nearly 100 times in the filing and “authentic” appearing 39 times.

“Reddit’s community ecosystem is organically built upon shared interests, passions, and trust rather than friends, celebrities, and their followers,” read the document. “This distinction results in a unique sense of belonging, privacy, and authenticity for our users.”

Artificial intelligence was also something Reddit directly addressed, labeling the site’s content “a foundational part” of training leading AI models on the market. Reddit has also internally created AI to address onboarding, translation, and content moderation.

Related: AI Is Changing How Businesses Recruit for Open Roles — and How Candidates Are Gaming the System

“Our massive corpus of conversational data and knowledge is what makes us unique, and we believe its value will continue to grow over time as our user-generated data continues to grow,” Reddit wrote.

Reddit’s Risks In the filing, Reddit also identified multiple events that could harm the company’s growth. Industry competitors, lower-quality ads, technical problems, inappropriate uses of the platform, and negative publicity were all factors the company listed.

Reddit warned in the filing that its community’s participation in its IPO could cause “increased volatility” in the price of its stock. Redditors have manipulated low-performing stock or “meme stock” before, with GameStop being a notable example that lost institutions billions of dollars.

Reddit has also never returned a profit, and the company cautions that it might have net losses in the future. As of December 2023, Reddit had a deficit of about $716.6 million.

Related: JPMorgan Says Its AI Cash Flow Software Cut Human Work By Almost 90%

The site is still in its early stages of generating revenue, and its ability to make a profit depends on scaling its advertising business and trying out other ways of generating revenue. Reddit’s filing shows that there’s no guarantee that the company will succeed in getting non-advertising revenue.

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