FORTUNE — Is Glam Media still going public this year?
That’s the question raised by a TechCrunch report about how the female-focused digital media company just raised $25 million in new venture capital funding, led by Keating Capital. This is on top of a prior $150 million in equity funding.
My source said this is a “top up round” for Glam — in another words, some extra cash to keep the company going while it goes through the IPO process. Business Insider reported back in February that Glam (which runs a number of lifestyle-focused sites including Glam and Foodie, and runs advertising across a broader network of publishers) had filed for an IPO, using a provision in the JOBS Act to initially keep the filing secret.
So why raise more private funding? After all, Glam could file its S-1 next week and still be trading well before Columbus Day.
The answer is a bit complicated. First, a source close to the situation says that the “new” $25 million actually was raised more than three months ago, in a pair of tranches — and that the company “is effectively at profitability.” That would seem to imply that the company remains on target for a Q4 listing.
The hold-up, however, is based on the fact that Glam’s most likely comps are having a rough go of things. Millennial Media
, for example, priced its IPO at $13 per share in March 2012 and saw its price more than double on its first day of trading. Since then, however, the stock has been steadily drifting lower — opening today at just $6.50 per share and falling even further on news of its $225 million acquisition of JumpTap. And then there are Tremor Video
— neither of which have managed to ever top $10 per share. A fourth comp, Adap.tv, had been planning to go public sometime after Labor Day but instead sold to AOL
due largely to its belief that traders didn’t yet appreciate these sorts of companies.
Glam is believed to be larger than any of the aforementioned companies, but it doesn’t want to sell low. My source says that while a 2013 IPO remains possible, a better bet would be for it to occur in Q1 or Q2 of next year.
“The $25 million provides some breathing room,” the source explains. “Glam isn’t basing its decision on the performance of other companies, but it would be irresponsible to not at least be paying attention and figuring out what those values would mean for [Glam].”
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