Sonos Public Listing Comes As Investor Appetite for Tech IPOs Grows

July 6, 2018

Smart speaker maker Sonos has officially filed to go public.

The company, which confidentially filed for an IPO in April, could raise as much as $100 million in the offering and could be valued at as much as $3 billion.

According to its regulatory filings, Sonos brought in revenue of over $1 billion in the 12 months ending in March. It posted a profit of $13.1 million in the first half of its fiscal year, slightly lower than the $15 million brought in the previous year. Over the last 12 months though, the company posted a loss of about $16 million.

Sonos, founded in 2002, pioneered the wireless speaker space, creating a product that allowed people to have multiple speakers playing different audio at the same time. Its original competitors were the likes of Bose and Bang & Olufsen.

After Apple, Google, and Amazon entered the field, the company scrambled to compete in the rapidly changing landscape by launching smart speakers powered by Amazon’s Alexa. The company’s products can also seamlessly integrate with external streaming systems and voice assistants, including Spotify and Apple Music.

Sonos is betting that its flexibility will be attractive to investors, said Wall Street Journal reporter Maureen Farrell.

“Part of the appeal, and this is obviously something that they really tout and will thoroughly be touting on the roadshow, is that they can partner with all of these companies,” said Farrell, who broke the story that the company was looking to go public in April.

“They obviously have huge competition, but I think what they’re betting on is that you get one of them in your house, or a couple, you really like it, and then they have this moat around them.”

Sonos would join more than a dozen tech companies that made a public debut this year in an attempt to capitalize on growing investor appetite for tech stocks, said Farrell.

“Last year we saw some pretty disastrous IPOs,” she said, alluding to Snap’s turbulent public offering. “It’s been such an incredibly different landscape this year."

"Tech IPOs are up more than 50 percent year-to-date," said Farrell.

"It just seems like investors right now are clamoring for anything tech-ish.”

Sonos plans to list on the Nasdaq under the ticker "SONO."

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