How well did Klaviyo, Arm and Instacart do in their first attempt at public markets?

Talk to anyone CEO the day their company goes public, and they will tell you that the IPO is just one step in their journey; the company is unfinished; we are just getting started.

This is true. It is also true that going public is also an important milestone for any company.

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CEOs want to minimize chance more than change. You, on the other end of the phone or video call, nod your head knowing that you’ve been told a little spin, and knowing that the CEO knows you know too. It is a dance.

However, the CEO is right that going public is not the end of their journey. Now they are the CEO of a listed company, and have to sit down regularly with analysts and investors to address their company’s performance. That’s a change.

To that end, three recent tech IPOs recently reported their financial performance for the first time as public companies, and I’d like to discuss their results. Not only because I’m very curious about how these former startups have done, but because going public often involves some costs that make newly public companies appear to be not very useful right out of the gate. Also, some of the headlines I saw this morning have me scratching my head.

So, let’s do a quick summary of the results from Arm (chip design), Klaviyo (business software), and Instacart (grocery delivery and ads) and ask how they perform once we allow the expenses related to the IPO. After all, the better (or worse) these companies fare, the more (less) likely we will see other private tech shops trying to follow suit.

Income roll calls

ARMS reported revenue of $806 million in the second quarter ended September 30, 28% from the $630 million reported last year. The company’s strong gross margin of more than 90% was not enough to generate enough gross profit, however, to cover its full operating expenses of $916 million, leading to a $156 million loss of operations and a $110 million net loss. The company was profitable in the same quarter last year.

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