Snapchat parent Snap files for an IPO; offering could value the company as high as $25 billion
Snap brought in $60 million in ad revenue last year and is on track to surpass its expectations of $250 million to $350 million in ad revenue for 2016. The firm is still losing money overall even as it attracts over 100 million users. On the company's website, it claims that Snapchat reaches 41% of those 18 to 34 in the U.S.
Originally known for its self-destructing photos that disappear after being viewed for ten seconds, Snapchat's filters are also quite popular as they produce images that turn the app's user into a dog with ears and a long tongue, a motorcycle cop with a bushy mustache, a bunny with long ears and whiskers, and many other funny creatures. Snapchat Stories is a series of snaps (photos) that are taken over a 24-hour period by a subscriber, and are supposed to tell a story.
Snap just launched its first tangible product, Spectacles. These are sunglasses with a small video camera attached to the right lens that allows the user to record 10 to 30 seconds of video. The clips can be sent wirelessly to a smartphone and then posted on social media sites. The glasses are priced at $129.99, and are sold from a single vending machine that changes its location every 24-hours.
With Snapchat closing in on a public offering valuing the company at as much as $25 billion, it should be remembered that Google tried to buy the company for $4 billion three years ago. Even though it was much smaller, the app was just beginning to generate a buzz. As tempting as the offer must have sounded to Snapchat co-founder and CEO Evan Spiegel, he obviously did the right thing in turning down Google.