Kara Swisher

Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

Here Comes Another Web IPO: LinkedIn S-1 Filing Imminent

LinkedIn, the online business networking site, is likely to file regulatory documents for an initial public offering as early as today, according to sources close to the situation.

Sources said LinkedIn is ready to submit an S-1 filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission, its first step in the IPO process, and that could happen after the markets close this afternoon.

The offering is likely to be led by Morgan Stanley, although Goldman Sachs is an investor in LinkedIn and could also be part of the underwriting team.

The Mountain View, Calif., company currently has what it describes as “the world’s largest professional network on the Internet with more than 90 million members in over 200 countries and territories.” It has 1,000 full-time employees.

LinkedIn’s entry into the public market is one that many expect will be followed by other Internet firms in the coming year, including Zynga, Chegg, Groupon, and, most anticipated of all, Facebook.

Demand Media, a Santa Monica, Calif., online publisher, went public yesterday, with an offering that valued the content company at $1.5 billion.

How much is LinkedIn worth? According to a NetworkEffect post, “recent purchases of its stock have valued the company at more than $2 billion. Pushing the company toward the public markets would help set a price range up higher.”

LinkedIn was founded in the living room of co-founder and Chairman Reid Hoffman–who is also a well-known Silicon Valley entrepreneur and investor–in 2002 and launched in 2003. Its current CEO is former Yahoo exec Jeff Weiner.

Its investors include Sequoia Capital, Greylock Partners and several others, with a total venture funding of $103 million.

A LinkedIn spokeswoman declined to comment (but, in a very lovely manner).

comments so far. Add yours.

  • http://www.mosthost.net Chris

    Why wouldn’t they? After seeing the demand for Demand Media, Inc I’m sure every company in related sector will soon be going public. LinkedIn certainly has the chance to do very, very well in an IPO.

  • Ravi Kalakota

    LinkedIn will do well in this economy. It has several things going for it:
    – high unemployment numbers forcing people to network diligently and pay for extra features (great upsell);
    – employed but unhappy people who are looking for new jobs (my estimate is that at least 20-25% of labor force will shift to a new job given an opportunity)
    – right place at the right time…social media interest and hype in the financial community (fund managers who are willing to buy anything social);
    – A simple but very usable site for networking (the ability to signup for different communities of interest is extremely powerful)

    There are numerous adjacent spaces LinkedIn can move into…job postings and brokering (ala Monster); sophisticated matching of applicants to potential jobs (ala eHarmony’esqu); referral models (refer 3 qualified friends and get $50.00 each; if they are selected $1000); deepening college alumni networks; industry specific micro-segments; country specific networking and so on.

    This is just the early days of professional networking. I hope they continue to innovate and don’t sell out too quickly.

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