Coinbase Files to Sell 114.9 Million Shares in Direct-Listing IPO

Coinbase Global plans to sell 114.9 million shares in a direct-listing initial public offering.
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Coinbase Global, the largest U.S. cryptocurrency brokerage, on Wednesday submitted plans to sell 114.9 million shares in a direct-listing initial public offering that could value the company at more than $100 billion.

In an amended S-1 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Coinbase said it plans to sell up to 114.9 million shares as part of its Nasdaq direct listing. Coinbase will list on the Nasdaq with the ticker "COIN." The company initially announced its intentions to go public in December.

Coinbase said low and high sales prices of its Class A and Class B common stock in private transactions during the first quarter were $200 and $375.01, respectively, with a volume-weighted price per share of $343.58.

However, the company cautioned that recent trading prices in private transactions may have little or no relation to the company's opening public price. The filing didn't indicate a trading date.

Direct listings, which differ from traditional IPOs, aim to level the playing field for investors and give companies another path to going public. In December, the SEC approved a rule change from the New York Stock Exchange to allow direct floor listings.

Companies that use direct floor listings sell new shares and raise fresh capital in a single large transaction directly on the exchange without underwriters. Underwriters, typically large financial institutions such as banks and investment houses, are involved in traditional IPOs as guarantors who accept financial risk for liability in case of damage or financial loss.

Gaming platform Roblox  (RBLX) - Get Report earlier this month went public via a direct listing. Palantir Technologies (PLTR) - Get Report and Asana (ASAN) - Get Report both used the method to go public last fall.

Coinbase quickly has become one of the better-known exchanges for trading Bitcoin, Ethereum and other so-called non-fiat currencies that aren’t tied to a specific currency by a specific country’s government, like the U.S. dollar.

The San Francisco-based company has raised some $537.4 million from early stage private investors. Its last round, which raised $300 million in 2018, valued Coinbase at $8 billion. Investors include Andreessen Horowitz, Tiger Global, IVP and Ribbit Capital.

Bitcoin, meantime, continues to trade well above $55,000. At last check, the digital currency was down 1.38% at $55,044, according to Coindesk. Bitcoin breached $60,000 over the weekend and has gained more than 22% in the past 10 days.