Benchmark-backed Confluent aims for $8 billion valuation in U.S. IPO

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June 16 (Reuters) - Confluent Inc is aiming for a valuation of about $8.3 billion in a U.S. initial public offering, cashing in on a surge in demand for live-streaming software as companies move online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Mountain View, California-based company plans to offer 23 million shares and has set a price range of $29 to $33 per share, according to a regulatory filing on Wednesday, looking to raise up to $759 million.

Confluent, which in April confidentially filed to go public, said revenue jumped about 58% in 2020 and 51% to $77 million in the first three months of this year. It was valued at $4.5 billion in April last year, according to PitchBook.

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The company is backed by venture capital firms Sequoia Capital, Benchmark Capital Partners VIII LP and Index Ventures.

Benchmark, which owns about 15.3% of Confluent's common stock, is the largest shareholder, the filing showed.

Confluent uses Apache Kafka, an open source event streaming platform, used by 70% of Fortune 500 companies.

Its offerings can be used through Confluent Cloud, an on-demand software-as-a-service that is available on Inc's (AMZN.O) AWS and Microsoft Corp's (MSFT.O) Azure platforms among others, or the Confluent Platform software.

Founded in 2014 by former LinkedIn employees, Confluent counts Expedia Group Inc (EXPE.O), Intel Corp (INTC.O) and Humana Inc (HUM.N) as some of its major customers.

The filing comes as the U.S. IPO remains red hot. In less than six months since the beginning of the year, U.S. IPOs have totaled $171 billion, eclipsing last year's record of $168 billion, according to data from Dealogic. read more

Confluent has applied to list its common stock on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "CFLT".

Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan and Goldman Sachs are the lead underwriters.

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Reporting by Sohini Podder in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva

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