Oprah-backed Oatly plants IPO seed with private regulatory filing

(Reuters) - Sweden-based Oatly, which counts Oprah Winfrey and rapper Jay-Z among its prominent backers, has submitted plans for an initial public offering to regulators, the maker of vegan food and drink products said on Tuesday.

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The company, which sells its Oatly brand of products in more than 20 countries across Europe and Asia, could be valued at more than $5 billion, possibly up to $10 billion, people close to the matter told Reuters.

Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan and Credit Suisse are global coordinators for the flotation, which could take place before the summer break, the people said. JPMorgan and Credit Suisse had no immediate comment when contacted by Reuters, while Morgan Stanley declined to respond.

The planned stock market listing comes as the plant-based food sector has gained investor attention over the past few years, especially as fast-food chains and upscale restaurants create new menus to attract health- and environment-conscious diners.

Oatly, known for its oat milk products, has tie-ups with several cafes in the United States, including Starbucks and also sells its products online and in retail stores.

Much of the demand for plant-based food is being led by millennials and generation Z consumers, who are more than willing to spend on sustainable products that are also healthy.

Oatly raised a $200 million equity investment in July last year from a group led by buyout group Blackstone that includes Oprah Winfrey, Natalie Portman and former Starbucks Corp chief Howard Schultz. (

The new investors also included Jay-Z’s entertainment company Roc Nation, Orkila Capital and Rabobank’s Rabo Corporate Investments.

Verlinvest, the investment company of the family behind brewer Anheuser-Busch InBev remains Oatly’s majority owner through a joint venture with China Resources, which invested in Oatly in 2016.

Oatly, founded by brothers Rickard and Björn Öste, was valued at about $2 billion in July, according to PitchBook.

Reporting by Anirban Sen and Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru, Arno Schuetze in Frankfurt and Abhinav Ramnarayan in London; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Emelia Sithole-Matarise