Online home furnishings site Wayfair eyeing over $350M in IPO

Boston-based online home furnishings site Wayfair is planning to float an initial public offering (IPO) of its Class A common stock. It will seek to raise gross proceeds of up to $350 million in the public issue on the New York Stock Exchange, the company has said in a regulatory filing.

The proceeds will be used for investment and acquisition purposes. The filing, however, did not disclose the number of shares Wayfair would be selling or at what price. Goldman Sachs & Co, BofA Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, and Allen & Co LLC are among the lead underwriters to the IPO.

Founded in 2002 by Indian origin Neeraj Shah (CEO) and Steve Conine (CTO), the company recently exceeded $900 million in annual revenue. It offers seven million home products from 12,000 brands across its portfolio properties that include Wayfair.com, AllModern.com, JossandMain.com, BirchLane.com and DwellStudio.com.

Both the founders met as high school students attending a summer program at Cornell University, where they went on to study engineering. Before founding Wayfair, the duo had started Simplify Mobile, an enterprise software company.

According to the filing, Wayfair’s sales have been rising rapidly, but so has its losses. The company’s revenue jumped 50 per cent in the first half of 2014 to $574.1 million, from $383.2 million in the same period last year. However, it posted a net loss of $51.4 million for the six-month period while its operating expenses during the same period rose to $185.1 million from $102.8 million a year earlier.

Wayfair had raised about $150 million in March this year from T. Rowe Price and other mutual funds that gave the company a valuation of over $2 billion. Prior to that, it had raised $36 million in 2012. Its investors include Battery Ventures, Great Hill Partners, HarbourVest Partners and Spark Capital.

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