Technology

The website maker’s Squarespace files are posted on the NYSE through direct listing

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Anthony Casalena, CEO of Squarespace.

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Squarespace, which is used to create website building software, was released on Friday under the symbol “SQSP” on the New York Stock Exchange.

The company eschews a traditional IPO, in which institutional investors issue new shares to raise new capital, and instead uses a direct listing, in which existing shares are sold in the public market, to provide liquidity for former investors and employees. This mechanism has become increasingly popular, and tech companies Slack, Spotify, Palantir, Roblox, and Coinbase have opted for direct listings in recent years. Squarespace raised $ 300 million last month.

The company had sales of $ 621.1 million in 2020, with sales increasing 28% year over year. Squarespace aims to grow its business by signing up new customers and attracting existing customers to use more of its services, including tools for selling products online.

Squarespace had more than 3.6 million subscriptions as of year-end, up roughly 23%.

Squarespace doesn’t focus on large businesses, but rather on self-employed and small businesses. New York-based cloud infrastructure provider DigitalOcean is also focusing on smaller businesses for growth.

The competition includes Automattic, Wix, Weebly, as well as domain registration companies like GoDaddy and e-commerce companies like Shopify and BigCommerce.

Founded in 2003, Squarespace is based in New York and employed 1,256 people at the end of 2020.

Anthony Casalena, Founder and CEO of Squarespace, will control the majority of Squarespace’s voting rights. Squarespace sells Class A shares of its shares, each receiving one vote, and Casalena owns the vast majority of the company’s Class B shares, each receiving 10 votes.

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Katherine Clark