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Rover collars investors, ‘sniffs around IPO’
Posted on Friday, 14 July 2017 13:14
Fresh from acquiring DogVacay earlier this year, Rover is eyeing further growth following a USD 65.00 million cash injection which the pet-sitting and dog-walking startup’s chief executive noted would eventually help pave the way for a listing.
Spark Capital led the latest round of funding which included new investors Bespoke Strategies and StepStone Group joining the ranks of existing backers ranging from Madrona Venture and Menlo Ventures to Foundry Group and OMERS Ventures.
Proceeds will fuel international expansion, drive brand awareness and launch new services and tools for sitters and owners alike, despite the fact the company was not originally looking to raise more money.
However, Spark doggedly followed the six-year-old startup with a view to making an investment, with general partner Megan Quinn telling the technology news website: “Frankly, we were very persistent”.
Chief executive Aaron Easterly noted: “Our core business is doing really phenomenal. But we wanted to be open to additional avenues to accelerate growth.
“We could have continued to play it out, but this gives us a lot more flexibility to throw some fuel on the fire.”
Easterly told GeekWire that Rover is walking the line to become profitable by the end of this year, with an initial public offering (IPO) being the “most likely eventual outcome”, after completing a USD 40.00 million financing last year.
In fact, according to yesterday’s statement, the company’s net revenue is expected to soar 200.0 per cent this year, helped in part through March’s acquisition of main competitor DogVacay which held a strong position in Canada.
With regards to the mooted IPO, Easterly is currently downplaying the suggestion, saying the pet-sitting service provider is not going to rush headlong into the public market.
The chief executive told GeekWire: “We are still at a level of growth that is not easy to predict — it’s a lot easier to predict a business growing in the 3.0-to-6.0 per cent range than it is for businesses that are tripling.”
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