Instacart to defy tech IPO doldrums with Nasdaq debut

Instacart to defy tech IPO doldrums with Nasdaq debut

US grocery delivery startup Instacart on Friday filed to become a publicly traded company on the New York-based Nasdaq, potentially breaking IPO doldrums that have beset tech firms in recent years.

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The San Francisco company told the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that it intended to list shares of stock under the trading symbol "CART."

The number of shares and pricing were yet to be determined, according to the filing by Maplebear Inc., which does business as Instacart.

Founded in 2012, the venture capital backed startup saw its business soar early in the coronavirus pandemic as people avoided grocery stores due to the risks from Covid-19.

The company's business went on to cool, however, leading to a cut to its workforce of shoppers.

Instacart combined in-store staff with independent "gig workers," who shop for and deliver groceries.

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In recent years it has put a focus on orders being ready for pickup at grocery stores instead of being dropped off at customers' doors.

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"We believe the future of grocery won't be about choosing between shopping online and in-store," Instacart chief executive Fidji Simo said in a letter filed with market regulators.

"Most of us are going to do both. So we want to create a truly omni-channel experience that brings the best of the online shopping experience to physical stores, and vice versa."

Artificial intelligence is among the innovations that Instacart is investing in to fulfill its goal, according to the company.

Instacart said in the filing that it had net income of $242 million in the first half of this year.

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The company warned that it has a history of losses and "may be unable to sustain profitability or generate profitable growth in the future."

A stock market debut by Instacart would come as the tech industry is weathering challenging economic conditions that have prompted layoffs and other cost cutting measures.

Earlier this week, Arm, a world leader in designing chips that are used in smartphones, also announced its upcoming IPO.


© Agence France-Presse

Source: AFP

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