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Reddit taps Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs for IPO – source

Randy Mancini 2 Jan 7
FILE PHOTO: Reddit app is seen on a smartphone in this illustration
FILE PHOTO: Reddit app is seen on a smartphone in this illustration taken, July 13, 2021. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

January 7, 2022

(Reuters) -Social media platform Reddit Inc, whose message boards became central to meme stock trading frenzy in 2021, is tapping Wall Street banks Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs Group for its initial public offering, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Friday.

Reddit had confidentially filed for an IPO in December and is aiming for a valuation of over $15 billion at the time of its flotation. It was valued at $10 billion in a private fundraising round led by Fidelity Management in August.

A second source familiar with the matter said JPMorgan Chase is also one of the top underwriters on the deal.

Goldman Sachs and Reddit did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for comment. Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan Chase declined to comment.

Reddit, which was founded in 2005 by Steve Huffman and Alexis Ohanian, has more than 50 million daily active users and over 100,000 communities.

Its message boards, especially its WallStreetBets thread, were at the heart of a pitched battle between small-time traders and big hedge funds and had helped drive big gains in highly shorted shares of companies such as GameStop and AMC, while popularizing the term meme stocks.

Globally, IPOs have raised a record $594 billion in 2021, riding the coattails of stock market rallies with technology and healthcare being the biggest sectors driving IPO volumes.

There were 426 technology IPOs last year and 332 healthcare-related deals, collectively accounting for almost 42% of IPO proceeds raised by companies globally, according to Refinitiv.

Bloomberg News first reported the news.

(Reporting by Chavi Mehta and Anirban Sen in Bengaluru; Krystal Hu in Toronto; Editing by Shailesh Kuber and Arun Koyyur)