DoorDash Confidentially Files Plans For Public Debut

Law360 (February 27, 2020, 5:09 PM EST) -- Food delivery company DoorDash said Thursday it confidentially filed for an initial public offering, teeing up a potentially high-profile debut later this year.

DoorDash said it hasn't yet determined how many shares it will offer or set an expected price range. The timing of its debut is also uncertain, as the California-based company said it expects to go forward with the IPO "after the [U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission] completes its review process, subject to market and other conditions."

Companies may submit drafts of IPO registration statements confidentially as long as they make their plans public at least 15 days before they begin marketing their offerings. Confidential filings were authorized by the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act of 2012 on the theory that more companies will consider IPOs if they can keep key details of their operation under wraps from competitors while they sort out feedback from the SEC.

DoorDash offers on-demand food delivery services, operating in more than 4,000 cities across the U.S. and Canada, and it recently launched in Melbourne, Australia, according to its website. DoorDash's backers include Sequoia Capital, Y Combinator, Khosla Ventures and Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers.

Back in 2018, DoorDash raised $250 million at a $4 billion valuation in a growth round of fundraising. And in 2016, it raised $127 million in a Series C round led by Sequoia Capital, Kleiner Perkins and Khosla Ventures.

The company's debut plans come amid uncertain economic conditions as coronavirus fears dampen markets and public investors are increasingly emphasizing profitability in evaluating venture-backed companies. Buzzy, privately-backed companies such as Uber, Lyft and, more recently, Casper haven't taken off in public markets. Casper went public in January after pricing at the bottom of its downwardly revised range, slashing its private-market valuation in half.

DoorDash is also facing scrutiny from the courts. The District of Columbia in November accused the company of misleading customers about how their tips were being used in compensating its workers. And in its home state of California, DoorDash was recently ordered to individually arbitrate more than 5,000 employment misclassification claims brought by its couriers, who claim the company flouted the Fair Labor Standards Act.

The company is also facing the broader threat brought by a new California law that makes it more difficult to classify workers as independent contractors. DoorDash in October joined Uber and Lyft in a $90 million ballot initiative the companies hope to put before voters in November.

Representatives for DoorDash declined to comment beyond the press release. Counsel information was not immediately available.

--Additional reporting by Tom Zanki, Danielle Nicole Smith, Chelsea Naso, Hailey Konnath, Matthew Perlman and Hannah Albarazi. Editing by Jay Jackson Jr.

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