Startup News: Sweden’s Klarna plans to launch IPO in U.S. 

In December, fintech firm Klarna made Forge Global’s list of five companies likely to go public this year. At the time, however, it wasn’t clear which country the Stockholm-based company would choose to debut its shares.

Last week, however, Klarna CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski ended the speculation. In an interview with Bloomberg, he said that the company is eyeing an exchange in the U.S. for an IPO sometime in the near future. Siemiatkowski added that the U.S. is a “natural choice” for an IPO because it’s the company’s largest country market by revenue, dwarfing other countries such as the U.K. and Germany.

Founded in 2005, Klarna provides payment processing for the e-commerce industry. According to Bloomberg, the valuation of the “buy now, pay later” digital lending firm reached a height of $45.6 billion in 2021. And in 2022, Klarna’s latest valuation had dropped and was listed at nearly $6.7 billion on Forge. The Forge Price™ is $202.25 as of March 5, 2024, an 85% discount to the $1,353.48 Klarna was priced at in June 2021.

Figma offers improved benefits package to workers after Adobe takeover Shelved

In the wake of a failed acquisition by software maker Abode, Figma has come up with a consolation prize to cheer up workers.

According to Reuters, Figma, a cloud-based platform for collaborative design in corporate team environments, will improve equity packages for employees who remain with the company and also offer an optional program to those who wish to leave the company.

Last month, Adobe — the maker of Photoshop, Acrobat Reader, and other enterprise and consumer software — dropped its $20 billion deal to buy Figma after concluding that there was “no clear path” to winning antitrust approvals in Europe and the U.K.

Founded in 2011, San Francisco-based Figma had a valuation listed on Forge of $10.38 billion as of a June 2021 funding round. The Forge Price™ as of March 5, 2024 was $17.71 which implies a valuation of $8.63 billion. This indicates a 17% discount to Figma’s June 2021 funding round.

Figure Technologies seeks to launch a Stablecoin

Figure Technologies, the lending-focused fintech that uses the blockchain, is seeking approval to issue an interest-bearing stablecoin.

According to Bloomberg, “The move is a novel attempt at creating a new class of stablecoins with federal legitimacy, and if successful, Figure will be offering the first stablecoin regulated as a security in the U.S."

Bloomberg writes that Figure is seeking to register the stablecoin as so-called “face-amount certificates,” using blockchain technology. If approved, it will be available to both U.S. retail and institutional investors.

Founded in 2018 by serial tech entrepreneur Mike Cagney, San Francisco-based Figure specializes in mortgage financing and bridge loans. Forge’s last known valuation of Figure was $3.3 billion as of a May 2021 funding round. The Forge Price™ for Figure as of March 5, 2024 was $6.00 and has remained flat year-to-date.

About the Author

John Kimelman is a veteran journalist who has worked at Barron’s and CNBC covering such topics as investing and commercial banking. Mr. Kimelman has received compensation from Forge Global, Inc. for authoring this article. Read more from John.

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