Online meal firm HelloFresh prepares for listing this year: sources

Reuters News
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Posted: Aug 05, 2015 3:24 AM

By Arno Schuetze and Alexander Hübner

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Online meal preparation firm HelloFresh is readying a stock market listing this year as it seeks to capitalize on buoyant equities markets and investor appetite for the Internet food market, according to three people familiar with the matter.

Majority owner Rocket Internet and co-investors have mandated Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs to organize the listing, the sources said.

The initial public offering (IPO) in Frankfurt may take place as early as October and could value the company at more than 1 billion euros ($1.1 billion), one of the people said.

German e-commerce investor Rocket Internet, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs all declined to comment.

HelloFresh has 250,000 regular subscribers, serving over four million meals a month in countries ranging from the United States to Germany, Britain and the Benelux countries.

U.S. peer Blue Apron, which sells 3 million meals per month, in June secured funding which valued it at more than $2 billion.

HelloFresh, which was founded in 2011, has estimated annualized revenues of around 120 million euros, according to a Rocket Internet investor presentation on its own 2014 earnings. But no profit figures have been released.

In February, HelloFresh secured 110 million euros in new financing from its owners, which also include Insight Venture Partners, Phenomen Ventures, and Vorwerk Direct Selling Ventures, valuing it at 624 million euros.

The company would join a raft of companies planning to list in the second half of the year, including Germany's biggest digital classifieds group Scout24.

Rocket Internet has invested in more than 100 start-ups. But HelloFresh is one of only a handful in which it holds a majority stake, with 51.7 percent.

The e-commerce investor is also preparing flotations of other groups, according to sources familiar with the matter.

Other Internet IPOs that could take place in the next two quarters include food-ordering service Delivery Hero, emerging market fashion retailer Global Fashion Group, and furnishings retailers Westwing and Home24, the sources said.

(Editing by Eric Auchard and Pravin Char)