Snap (formerly Snapchat) amended its charter to ensure that its founders retain majority voting control after the company’s initial public offering, giving them more control than the founders at Facebook and Google had after those companies went public. Separately, Google quietly made an undisclosed investment in Snap.
CEO Evan Spiegel and co-founder and chief technology officer Bobby Murphy together control about 74% of the company, according to an analysis by Equidate, a stock market for private technology companies. That compares with the 41% that Google’s Larry Page and Sergey Brin had after their IPO, and the 56% Mark Zuckerberg held after Facebook’s.
Snap, formerly known as Snapchat, is asking public-market investors to back its management team and support their potential to build the next technology juggernaut. The company behind the social media app that’s wildly popular with teens and millennials is aiming to raise as much as US$4bn in an IPO that could value it at $25bn to $35bn, people familiar with the matter have said. This year, Snap is aiming for revenue of $350m.
Snap plans to go public as early as March. The filing Monday in Delaware, which laid out the founders’ voting rights, indicates that the company is cleaning up its ownership structure in preparation.
Google seems to approve. Alphabet’s growth equity division, previously called Google Capital, renamed itself to CapitalG on Friday. With the re-brand, the firm also disclosed a recent investment in Snap. A spokeswoman for CapitalG declined to share the total investment.
- Reported with assistance from Mark Bergen and Alex Barinka