Twilio Aims to Raise $140 Million After Slow Start for Tech IPOs

  • Offering would be second VC-backed U.S. IPO so far this year
  • While revenue is up, web tools maker has yet to turn profit

Public market investors may finally get a chance to get their hands on an up-and-coming technology stock in the proposed initial public offering of web and mobile applications tools maker Twilio Inc.

The Bessemer Venture Partners-backed company set a price range from $12 to $14 for 10 million Class A shares in a regulatory filing Monday, seeking to raise as much as $140 million at the high end of the range. If the San Francisco-based company completes its offering, it would be only the second venture capital-backed technology or communications company to go public in the U.S. this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The amount of money raised in U.S. IPOs this year is only about a third of the amount in the same period of 2015. VC-backed technology companies have instead turned to private funding to raise new capital.

Last year six of those companies went public to raise $1.3 billion through June 10, including GoDaddy Inc., Etsy Inc. and Box Inc. This year’s sole listing, Acacia Communications Inc., raised $119 million, including the underwriters’ over-allotment.

Twilio had more than 28,000 active customers at the end of March, according to company filings. They include enterprise-software company Box, department-store chain Nordstrom Inc. and rideshare company Uber Technologies Inc.

Even with notable customers on its bench, Twilio has yet to make a profit. Though revenue grew 88 percent to $167 million in 2015, it posted a net loss of $36 million. In 2014, its revenue jumped 78 percent to $89 million, while net loss was $27 million. The company said it expects its growth rate to decline over time.

Twilio plans to use proceeds from the offering for general corporate purposes, including investing in engineering, sales and marketing and to enhance its technology platform, according to the prospectus.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. are leading Twilio’s offering. It plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange with the symbol TWLO.

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