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Pinterest Tops Targeted IPO Range to Raise $1.4 Billion

Ben Silbermann co-founder and CEO of Pinterest speaks at the WSJD Live conference in Laguna BeachBen Silbermann co-founder and CEO of Pinterest speaks at the WSJD Live conference in Laguna Beach
Ben Silbermann co-founder and CEO of PinterestMike Blake REUTERS

Pinterest raised about $1.4 billion in its initial public offering, pricing its shares above a targeted range as the year’s tech unicorn stampede gains momentum.

The digital scrap-booking company sold 75 million shares Wednesday for $19 each, after marketing them for $15 to $17, according to a statement. Based on the number of Class A and B shares outstanding after the offer, as detailed in a regulatory filing, Pinterest’s IPO price would value it at about $10.1 billion.

Including restricted stock and additional shares that could be sold by the underwriters, the IPO values the San Francisco-based company at about $12.7 billion, said a person familiar with the matter who asked not to be identified because those details weren’t public. Pinterest’s last valuation, from a private funding round in 2017, was $12.3 billion.

The listing is the second biggest in the U.S. so far this year, after Lyft’s $2.34 billion IPO and ahead of Tradeweb Markets’ $1.24 billion offer in March.

Those listings are likely to be eclipsed by Uber, whose IPO is expected to take place in May. Uber will seek to raise about $10 billion in an offering valuing it at about $100 billion, people familiar with its plans have said.

Zoom Video Communications Inc. also priced its IPO Wednesday, raising $751 million in 2019’s fourth-biggest listing so far. Other high-profile companies considering going public include Slack Technologies, Postmates, Palantir Technologies and Airbnb.

Pinterest took a slow and steady approach to growth and making money from the service, compared with the faster expansion rates of Facebook, Twitter, and Snap when they went public. Pinterest earlier revealed about $756 million in revenue from online advertisements in 2018, a 60 percent growth rate that accelerated from the year prior. Its net loss shrunk to $63 million in 2018 from $130 million in 2017. Pinterest says 265 million people use the digital scrapbook at least once a month.

Analysts expect revenue will likely come more from squeezing additional ad dollars from the base of users Pinterest already has, rather than growing its total audience.

The offer was led by Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase. and Allen & Co. Pinterest is set to begin trading Thursday on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol PINS.