Pinterest files confidentially for IPO

Pinterest Inc. has confidentially filed paperwork with the Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public offering, according to people familiar with the matter, as the online-image search company joins a parade of highly valued technology startups planning to list their shares in 2019.

The company and its underwriters, led by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co., are eyeing a late-June listing, some of the people said. They warned that, as always with IPOs and unpredictable markets, the timing could shift.

Pinterest is expected to seek a valuation in the public market of at least $12 billion—the level at which it most recently raised funding, some of the people said.

Pinterest’s Chief Executive Ben Silbermann has said the company would look to debut in 2019 and The Wall Street Journal reported in December that it was preparing for an IPO that could take place as soon as April.

Many of the most valuable private tech concerns have been racing to complete IPO preparations as public investors clamor for new shares in fast-growing companies. As of this week, stocks of U.S.-listed technology and internet companies that went public in 2018 are up about 33% on average, according to Dealogic. That’s far ahead of the major indexes and all 2018 U.S. IPOs, which are up 11%.

In part due to the partial government shutdown, there haven’t been any tech IPOs in the U.S. so far this year, but it’s becoming clear that the floodgates are about to open.

Lyft Inc., which filed confidentially for its IPO late last year, may make the submission public next week and begin trading on Nasdaq by the end of March, the Journal reported Wednesday. The ride-hailing company’s rival, Uber Technologies Inc., filed confidentially at the same time late last year, while workplace-messaging provider Slack Technologies Inc. has since submitted paperwork for a so-called direct listing.


In September, Pinterest, which launched in 2010, surpassed 250 million monthly active users, who visit the site to browse through and share billions of images on topics ranging from living-room furniture to dinner recipes and tattoos.

The company generates revenue from ads scattered across its site and notched more than $700 million in 2018, up 50% from the prior year, according to a person familiar with the matter.