Snapchat Raises $1.8B, IPO Expected This Year

Snapchat has raised about $1.81 billion in new funding, according to a regulatory filing released on Thursday.

Coming amidst a slowdown in venture capital activity, the massive cash infusion shows how highly investors value the social messaging service.

In light of the new funding, venture capital database PitchBook estimates that Snapchat’s valuation is $17.81 billion, which is up from $16 billion in February.

Yet Snapchat is clearly still trying to find its financial footing. In fact, it took in just $59 million in revenue last year, according to a pitch deck obtained by TechCrunch.



By next year, Snapchat expects to see revenue rise to upwards of $1 billion. How the social darling plans to make such a dramatic leap is not entirely clear.

Part of Snapchat’s growth strategy includes international expansion. Earlier this month, it broadened its UK advertiser base, and introduced new ad formats in the region.

Snapchat also continues to score big partnerships with top media and entertainment outlets. Last month, it announced a partnership with NBC to show highlights from the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio. The non-exclusive distribution deal was a first for the Peacock network, but likely not the last.

Snapchat also has partnerships with Major League Baseball and the NFL, which allow it to stream exclusive behind-the-scenes video rather than game footage.

Whether it’s enough to support bullish growth estimates, Snapchat is definitely growing. At the end of last year, it had 110 million daily active users -- up about 50% year-over-year, according to the leaked deck.

Snapchat also recently surpassed Instagram as the top social destination among teens, according to findings from Piper Jaffray.

Snapchat most recently raised $175 million in March. Fidelity led that round.

Looking ahead, Snapchat is said to be gearing up for a big public offering, later this year.



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