IPO Media & entertainment tech

ON24 Starts Trading As One Of The Oldest VC-Backed IPOs Of The Year

Shares of webcasting and virtual events platform ON24 began trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday, with its stock closing at $70.45, or nearly 41 percent above its IPO price.

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ON24 isn’t like many of the VC-backed companies going public nowadays: it’s been around for more than 20 years. The company was founded in 1998 and raised its Series A, which was led by Canaan Partners, in August 1999.

“It felt like the right time for us (to go public), it wasn’t so much what was going on in the markets,” ON24 Chief Marketing Officer Steve Daheb said in an interview with Crunchbase News. “There can be so much noise at any given time but it was about what we wanted to do as a company, our own trajectory and our own timing.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated interest in companies like ON24, which allows companies and people to host virtual events and stream webinars. The pandemic has caused companies across many different industries, including financial services and life sciences, to drive customer intimacy without proximity and accelerated the trend to move to digital, Daheb said.

ON24’s stock opened trading at $77 per share on Wednesday, 54 percent above its IPO price of $50. The company had set a price range of between $45 and $50, and raised around $428 million through its IPO.

ON24 reported nearly $103.7 million in total revenue for the first nine months of 2020, up about 59 percent from the same period in 2019, according to its S-1 registration statement. It also reported about $11 million in net income for the first nine months of 2020.

The company last raised funding in May 2016, with a $25 million round led by Goldman Sachs. ON24 is also backed by investors including Rho Ventures and U.S. Venture Partners.

“I think now that we have no choice but to use these digital tools, I think people realize how much better they are,” Daheb said. “You see increased pipeline, increased conversion, increased revenue, increased average deal size for customers … it’s just a better way to do things moving from a traditional physical analog to like we’ve seen with so many great SaaS platforms, modern digital platforms that can do it as a service.” 

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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