Ancestry.com Owners Weigh 2017 IPO of Genealogy Website

  • Silver Lake stake last year valued company at $2.6 billion
  • Permira, Spectrum Equity took company private in 2012

The private equity owners of genealogy website Ancestry.com are weighing an initial public offering of the company this year, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Ancestry.com’s owners, which include Permira and Silver Lake, have held talks with banks and are taking formal pitches from potential advisers who want to have a role in the offering, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private.

No final decision has been made and the owners may opt to keep the business for now, the people said.

The company, which began in 1983 as a family history and genealogy publisher, was taken private in 2012 by Permira and Spectrum Equity, in a deal valued at about $1.6 billion.

Last year, Silver Lake and sovereign wealth fund Government of Singapore Investment Corp. took stakes in Ancestry.com that gave the company an enterprise value of about $2.6 billion, according to a statement at the time. That investment saw Permira more than triple its original investment, including dividends, according to one of the people familiar with the situation.

Spokesmen for Permira, Spectrum Equity and GIC didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. Representatives for Silver Lake and Ancestry.com declined to comment.

Ancestry.com, based in Lehi, Utah, has more than 16 billion records and 68 million family trees containing 7 billion profiles, according to Permira’s website. It also provides DNA testing.

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