Startups Venture

Postmates Raises $300M, Targets 2019 IPO

Postmates, an American delivery startup,  announced today that it closed $300 million in a new funding round.

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Tiger Global led the round. The investor is a prior investor in Postmates, having previously taken part in its massive Series D. Postmates had raised $278 million before this round, meaning that its latest capital infusion is greater in scale than all of its preceding raises combined.

According to Fortune, the new round values Postmates at “approximately $1.2 billion.” That valuation comes against what Recode reporter Jason Delrey describes as “an operating loss of $75 million on $250 million in revenue in 2017” at the startup.

Postmates itself released a grip of metrics as part of its funding announcement, including notes on scale (greater than $1 billion annual gross merchandise volume), financial health (gross margins now “nearly 50 [percent] in the last year”), market viability (90 percent of locales “driving profitability,” which likely means positive contribution margin), and promises (more markets and 75 percent of US household penetration coming this “Fall”).

Those numbers and factoids along with the new capital point Postmates in a single direction, per its CEO’s comments and the company’s blog post: an IPO.

Per the company:

“We’ll balance targeted growth strategies, smart unit economics, and sensible customer pricing to expand from urban cores to suburban and rural parts of the country. And we’ll march towards an IPO.”

That Postmates wants to go public isn’t historically surprising; an IPO is a standard way for young companies to show maturity and provide liquidity to investors and employees. But to be so upfront about it in the unicorn era is notable.

Uber is also targeting an IPO, while fellow unicorns Airbnb and Pinterest seem less certain. Uber has 2019 in mind for its own debut. As does Postmates. Postmates’s CEO noted in an interview that “[w]e have a beautiful path to an IPO in 2019.”

Questions remain and competition abounds, but Postmates remains far more than not-dead in a market that many presumed Uber would simply take over. Not so, so far.

More on the matter when Postmates inevitably begins releasing financial information directly, or via targeted leaks, as it gets a few quarters out from filing.

Top Image Credit: Li-Anne Dias

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