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Fintech Startup Affirm Plans To Go Public This Year At Up To $10B Valuation: WSJ

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Fintech Startup Affirm Plans To Go Public This Year At Up To $10B Valuation: WSJ

Financial technology startup Affirm Inc. is working with Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE: GS) to prepare for an initial public offering by the end of this year, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

What Happened

The groundwork for taking the point-of-sale lender public is still at an early stage, and the company could also choose to merge itself with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) as a means of going public, according to the Journal's sources.

Affirm was last valued at $2.9 billion as of April 2019, according to data firm Pitchbook. Affirm is now targeting a valuation of more than $5 billion, even as high as $10 billion, people familiar with the matter told the Journal.

Why It Matters 

The San Francisco-based company enables shoppers, including customers of Walmart Inc (NYSE: WMT) and Expedia Group Inc (NASDAQ: EXPE), to pay for goods in installments. 

Affirm CEO Max Levchin, who is also a co-founder of PayPal Holdings Inc (NASDAQ: PYPL),  said last week that it would begin offering similar installment plans to customers of Shopify Inc (NYSE: SHOP)  later this year.

Among other fintech companies, SoftBank Group Corporation (OTC: SFTBY)-backed online insurer Lemonade Inc (NYSE: LMND) raised $319 million in its IPO this month — but the IPO valued the fintech significantly below its pre-money valuation at $1.6 billion.

PayPal also offers point-of-sale loans and has seen its shares rise 78% year-till-date.

 

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