Care.com Said to Pick Morgan Stanley as Lead Bank for IPO

Care.com Inc., owner of a website used to find babysitters, plans to hold an initial public offering early next year and chose Morgan Stanley (MS) as the lead bank, according to two people with knowledge of the decision.

Care.com, based in Waltham, Massachusetts, intends to file to go public in a few weeks and wants to raise about $100 million in the first quarter of 2014, said one of the people, who asked not to be named because the information isn’t public.

The company, which helps consumers find local caregivers for children, seniors and pets, has been expanding globally and making acquisitions, helping it to double revenue last year. Care.com hired former IRobot Corp. (IRBT) Chief Financial Officer John Leahy as CFO in April, bringing aboard an executive with public-company experience ahead of a potential IPO.

Akhilesh Raina, a spokesman at Morgan Stanley, and Meredith Robertson, a spokeswoman at Care.com, declined to comment.

Care.com, founded in 2006, raised $50 million in its most recent round of funding last year, led by Institutional Venture Partners. The investment brought the company’s total funding to $111 million, founder and Chief Executive Officer Sheila Lirio Marcelo said at the time.

Last year, the company started service in the U.K. and Canada and acquired Berlin-based Besser Betreut GmbH, boosting its presence in Europe.

Business Model

Care.com makes money from online subscriptions, along with the fees that providers pay to be listed on the website. In addition, companies that offer off-site services, such as day-care centers, may pay referral fees. The company also has corporate customers, including Google Inc. (GOOG) and Facebook Inc., that offer Care.com as a benefit for employees.

U.S. consumer Web IPO filings have been scarce since Facebook’s own initial share sale flopped in May 2012 -- only real estate site Trulia Inc. (TRLA), travel search engine Kayak Software Corp., and RetailMeNot Inc. (SALE) have gone public since then. RetailMeNot has jumped 44 percent since its share sale last month, and Facebook’s shares recovered to their IPO price of $38 last week for the first time since their debut trading day.

To contact the reporters on this story: Serena Saitto in New York at ssaitto@bloomberg.net; Lee Spears in New York at lspears3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jeffrey McCracken at jmccracken3@bloomberg.net

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