The underwriters price the deal at $45 a share, near the top of the range, giving a valuation of $4.25 for 7.84 million shares—the biggest U.S. Internet IPO since Google. Bessemer sells into the IPO, and Cowan and Levine exit and leave the board.
Analysts are divided with the bearish view being that the valuation is high and references to things like ‘key metrics’ of website visits and page views are reminiscent of Dotcom hype. The bullish view is that the company is supported by three diversified revenue streams – ads, premium content, and hiring tools sold to recruiters. It is also the only social media stock that is publicly available, justifying a premium on the shares.