Apr 22, 2021
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Warby Parker reportedly plans IPO

Apr 22, 2021

Trendy prescription eyewear brand Warby Parker is the latest retailer to jump on the red hot initial public offering market.

Warby Parker plans IPO. - Facebook: Warby Parker

The 11-year-old business, which got its start in the world of e-commerce, is expected to launch an IPO as early as this year, according to Bloomberg. 

The deal would presumably be worth more than the $3 billion valuation it set in 2020 when it raised $120 million in its most recent funding round. 

Since launch, the New York-based company has grown rapidly across North America. Founded in 2010 by college friends Dave Gilboa and Neil Blumenthal, Warby Parker started as a pure play online retailer with a $2,500 seed investment by students in the Venture Initiation Program of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. It currently operates 139 retail location in 33 states, as well as a handful of stores in Canada.

With many of its glasses/frame combos priced at $150, Warby Parker has been a force in the increasingly competitive value-priced eyewear market. It has also innovated in the eyewear market with its shopping experience that allows customers to get prescriptions through their apps on their smartphones and use of cameras to pick out frames. 

Its current investors include General Catalyst, Tiger Global Management, Forerunner Ventures, Spark Capital and Menlo Ventures.

Warby Parker could end up joining brands such as Poshmark, ThredUp, Dr Martens and The RealReal which have all launched IPOs since the beginning of the year. 

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