In hiring law firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, popular digital payments processor Stripe is taking its first steps toward going public, U.S. News reported. The company was valued at $95 billion in a March funding round.
By remaining private, the report stated that Stripe has been able to keep its financial details like revenue and profitability secret. However, it has also had the effect of making it so Stripe can’t use its shares as a publicly traded currency to help draw in new acquisitions or motivate its employees.
The company has been considering going public through a direct listing instead of a traditional initial public offering (IPO). That’s because it wouldn’t have to raise any money. But those plans could change, U.S. News reported, citing unnamed sources.
There’s no precise timing on a future IPO for Stripe, and a listing isn’t likely to happen in 2021, according to U.S. News.
Stripe, which was founded in 2010, processes hundreds of billions of dollars in transactions for businesses, including big names like Google, Uber, Amazon and Zoom. The company could potentially end up challenging big names like China’s ByteDance and Ant Group for the title of the world’s most valuable startups, U.S. News reported. Those two companies are worth around $200 billion each.
Stripe President and Co-Founder John Collison told PYMNTS about the possibilities facing new entrepreneurs starting businesses now. He said there could be new opportunities for businesses that opened during the pandemic, with 2 million businesses started in 2020 via Stripe — a number that ended up being more than the number created in the company’s entire lifetime to that point.
This came from businesses starting up via digital means from verticals like healthcare that previously hadn’t been digitizing very quickly.