Asset management giant BlackRock has taken at least a 5% stake in newly public payments technology company Square, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday.
BlackRock’s filing indicated that it holds nearly 2.8 million shares, worth $31.6 million at Square’s current share price of $11.32. Investors are required report to the SEC when they own at a 5% stake or more in any publicly traded company.
BlackRock, which has invested in private technology companies such as ride sharing giant Uber and business analytics company Domo, was not a direct investor in Square prior to its high-profile initial public offering in November. The company, founded and led by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, raised $279 million in the IPO.
Since then, Square’s shares have fluctuated generally between $12 and $13.50 per share. But this week, as the market turned sour, Square stock price dropped as much as 13%.
At its IPO pricing, Square was valued at $2.9 billion. Its current market capitalization is $3.7 billion.
A Square spokesman declined to comment about the Blackrock investment.
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BlackRock’s investment is a positive sign for Square by showing that the money management giant sees long-term value and growth in the company. A number of Wall Street analysts recently gave the company’s shares a “buy,” “overweight,” or “outperform” rating.
Jefferies and Goldman Sachs, which were both underwriters of the company’s IPO, said they were both bullish about company’s strategy of selling business-services alongside its payments software and credit card reader. In addition to collecting revenue from credit card payments, Square has focused on selling additional features to merchants like invoicing, payroll, cash advances, appointment scheduling, marketing features, and slicing and dicing business data.
But some investors may remain concerned that the company’s losses are growing slightly and revenue growth is slowing. In its original public IPO filing, Square reported a $77.6 million loss for the first six months of this year compared to a $79 million loss during the same period in 2014. Meanwhile, revenues rose to $560.5 million from $372 million during the same six months.
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In a more recent third quarter filing, Square posted a loss of $53.9 million on $332.2 million in revenue, indicating slower revenue growth than before and widening losses.
All eyes will be on Square in the next month if and when the newly public company reports earnings.