Warby Parker plans to go public via direct listing



By Kimberly Chin

Eyewear maker Warby Parker Inc. said on Tuesday it plans to go public through direct listing, making the company the latest to shy away from the traditional public offering process.

The direct-to-consumer company in June confidentially filed a draft registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a public offering.

Direct listings differ from traditional initial public offerings in that companies bring their shares directly to the stock exchange. Companies are able to save money that, in a more traditional IPO, would go to investment banks. This IPO option is not as common as traditional IPOs.

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Global Inc., data mining company Palantir Technologies Inc. and streaming platform Spotify Technology SA have gone public through direct listing.

The company generated revenue of $ 393.7 million last year and losses of $ 55.9 million. In 2019, it had revenue of $ 370.5 million and losses of $ 57.5 million.

New York-based Warby Parker was founded in 2010 and offers a range of affordable designer-quality eyeglasses and contact lenses, as well as services such as online eye exams and vision tests and in its stores.

The company plans to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol WRBY.

Write to Kimberly Chin at [email protected]


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