Snap makes public market debut

Posted March 03, 2017

And, if that's not enough, he's entitled to receive another 36.8 million shares over the next three years as a "CEO Award" for taking the company public, according to Snap's IPO filing. Before, the company was privately held, meaning there was no public market to buy and sell Snap shares.

Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange are now waiting for the first trades in Snapchat, one of the most highly-anticipated public debuts on the NYSE in years.

Though it is traditional for stock to rise in value in its first day of trading, the increase suggests early investor excitement around Snapchat, which re-branded as a Snap Inc and as a camera company in late 2016.

The company priced its share at $17 in its IPO, giving it a valuation of around $24bn, but the opening trading price was much higher than that, even though the company has never posted a profit.

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The value of Snapchat's owner has soared on its New York Stock Exchange debut after a flotation that valued the company at an initial $24bn (£19bn).

For Snap, which started its official bid to go public last Halloween, the looming question now is whether investors are in for a trick or a treat.

Snapchat has become hugely popular with young smartphone users keen to share messages that don't stay on the web for long.

But its user growth has slowed down in recent months.

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The feature, which was previously unique to Snapchat, plays photos and videos shared by users in a loop for 24 hours before they disappear.

Yet among the attractive figures for investors are Snap's average of 158 million active daily users. "It's definitely a function of how Snap is perceived-not every company could get away with this", says Thomas Ivey, a partner at law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, who is based in Silicon Valley.

Evan Speigel is 26 years old. Nevertheless, it looks like there's still some air left in the social media bubble. Snap is issuing and selling 145,000,000 shares of Class A common stock and the selling stockholders are selling an additional 55,000,000 shares of Class A common stock. Twitter's valuation, in comparison, is $11 billion.

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