By Nancy Dahlberg
Chew on this news: An IPO for a homegrown company is on the runway.
As has been rumored, Chewy.com filed documents with regulators on Monday to prepare for an initial public offering.
PetSmart acquired Chewy, based in Dania Beach, in 2017 for about $3 billion, in hopes of growing its online brand. But last year, PetSmart transferred part of its stake in Chewy, setting the stage for a potential IPO.
Chewy, founded in 2011 by Ryan Cohen and Michael Day, two college dropouts, in South Florida and was known for its customer service. The online-only pet business gained traction, has continued to expand in South Florida before and after the acquisition as well as adding fulfillment centers all over the company.
Today Chewy is responsible for selling nearly half of pet food sales online. The company has recently expanded its private label and launched “Chewy Pharmacy,” an online pet pharmacy. Cohen stepped down as CEO of the company last year. Chewy is being led by Sumit Singh, former COO of Chewy.
Chewy intends to apply to list its Class A common stock under the ticker symbol “CHWY.” Following the IPO, PetSmart will continue to be the majority owner of Chewy. It will use proceeds from the IPO for working capital and general corporate purposes, according to the filing. Chewy did not state how much it expects to raise in the offering. Its valuation is likely between $4.15 billion and $4.75 billion, according to media reports.
Chewy reported $3.5 billion in sales for fiscal 2018, up from $2.1 billion in 2017. For the same period, it reported a net loss of $268 million, down from a net loss of $338 million a year ago.
Chewy joins a long list of tech companies that have either recently gone public or are planning IPOs, including Lyft, Uber, Pinterest and SurveyMonkey.
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