Private Market Update: February 2021
February 17, 2021

Private Market Update: February 2021

Forge Team

Just one month into 2021, and we see the continuing trend from the latter part of 2020 – the IPO market is hot and getting hotter. Here’s what happened in January and what to know about the private markets as we look ahead.

Strong pipeline, varying exit strategies

Roblox, Compass, Coinbase, and UiPath are all still in the exit pipeline, with anticipated exits on the near-term horizon for each. Following Palantir, Spotify and Slack, Coinbase announced it would forego a traditional IPO and proposed a direct listing to reportedly avoid diluting their existing shareholders and handing over cheap stock to new investors. This would be the first direct listing of the year.

Private companies are also increasingly exploring exit opportunities through reverse mergers via special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs). This structure has sparked investors interest with reports of well-known names like 23andMe, Bird and WeWork announcing last month either an exploratory or intended SPAC merger. 23andMe is pursuing a public listing through a reverse merger with VG Acquisition Corp.; the transaction would flush 23andMe with $984 million in cash, which would be available at close, and will value the company near $3.5 billion.

Despite controversial headlines, investor interest in Robinhood soared on the Forge private marketplace even as the company raised emergency funds from its existing investors to build cash reserves as they faced scrutiny over the now-lifted trading restrictions placed on certain stocks.

Upward momentum

In January, the Forge platform saw unmatched traction – up 18% from December 2020 (a record month) – indicating record-high interest in shares of unicorn companies. Last month’s activities also resulted in the highest amount of funding in the US private markets in the past three years, with venture capitalists adding $16.7 billion into the market across 220+ deals. On top of this, the average deal size was $74 million compared to a $48 million average in 2020.

This flurry of high stakes activity on the private markets is showing no signs of slowing down, especially as we recently saw 15 new private companies achieve unicorn status.

2021 is shaping up to be an exciting, record-breaking year in the private markets. Stay in the know, and sign up for a monthly private market update from Forge here.

PLEASE READ THESE IMPORTANT LEGAL NOTICES & DISCLOSURES

The information and material presented in this article is provided for your informational purposes only and does not constitute an offer by Forge Global, Inc. Forge Securities LLC or any of its affiliates (collectively, "Forge") to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to buy any securities and may not be used or relied upon in connection with any offer or sale of securities. An offer or solicitation can be made only through the delivery of final offering document(s) and purchase agreement and will be subject to the terms and conditions and risks delivered in such documents.

This article does not constitute an offer to provide investment advice or service. Registered representatives of Forge Securities LLC do not (1) advise any member on the merits or prudence of a particular investment or transaction, or (2) assist in the determination of fair value of any security or investment, or (3) provide legal, tax, or transactional advisory services. Securities referenced in this article may be offered by Forge Securities LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.

Forge Securities LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Forge Global, Inc. Certain affiliates may act as principals in such transactions.

Investing in private company securities is not suitable for all investors. An investment in private company securities is highly speculative, involving a high degree of risk, and investors should be prepared to withstand a total loss of your investment. Private company securities are also highly illiquid and there is no guarantee that a market will develop for such securities. Each investment also carries its own specific risks and investors should conduct their own, independent due diligence regarding the investment, including obtaining additional information about the company, opinions, financial projections and legal or investment advice. Accordingly, investing in private company securities is appropriate only for those investors who can tolerate a high degree of risk and do not require a liquid investment.

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PLEASE READ THESE IMPORTANT LEGAL NOTICES & DISCLOSURES

The information and material presented in this article is provided for your informational purposes only and does not constitute an offer by Forge Global, Inc. Forge Securities LLC or any of its affiliates (collectively, "Forge") to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to buy any securities and may not be used or relied upon in connection with any offer or sale of securities. An offer or solicitation can be made only through the delivery of final offering document(s) and purchase agreement and will be subject to the terms and conditions and risks delivered in such documents.

This article does not constitute an offer to provide investment advice or service. Registered representatives of Forge Securities LLC do not (1) advise any member on the merits or prudence of a particular investment or transaction, or (2) assist in the determination of fair value of any security or investment, or (3) provide legal, tax, or transactional advisory services. Securities referenced in this article may be offered by Forge Securities LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.

Forge Securities LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Forge Global, Inc. Certain affiliates may act as principals in such transactions.

Investing in private company securities is not suitable for all investors. An investment in private company securities is highly speculative, involving a high degree of risk, and investors should be prepared to withstand a total loss of your investment. Private company securities are also highly illiquid and there is no guarantee that a market will develop for such securities. Each investment also carries its own specific risks and investors should conduct their own, independent due diligence regarding the investment, including obtaining additional information about the company, opinions, financial projections and legal or investment advice. Accordingly, investing in private company securities is appropriate only for those investors who can tolerate a high degree of risk and do not require a liquid investment.