SurveyMonkey has this week announced that it has confidentially filed for IPO. The survey and customer feedback market leader was previously valued at $2 billion at its last fundraising round in 2014. SurveyMonkey’s decision to file confidentially has granted them the opportunity to gauge investor interest while not having to disclose financial and operational details. Reuters reported in May that SurveyMonkey had hired J.P. Morgan to help lead IPO preparations.
In e-commerce news this week, the Supreme Court ruled that online retailers can be required to collect sales tax in states where they have no physical presence. Overturning a 1992 Supreme Court ruling, the recent decision is intended to resolve disputes around online retailers being at an advantage over brick and mortar retailers and states missing out on tax revenues. Since the ruling, South Dakota enacted a law requiring all merchants to collect a 4.5% sales tax if they had more than $100,000 in annual sales, or more than 200 individual transactions. Wayfair, Overstock and Newegg are facing litigation from state officials for violating this new law.
The digital marketing world this week saw the announcement of IGTV (Instagram TV) in Instagram’s latest bid to compete with YouTube as a platform for content creators. Available as its own native app as well as a button on the home page of the Instagram app, IGTV will allow content creators to publish hour-long videos on their own channel. Users will also have the option to swipe up and discover other creators. This announcement comes right after Instagram surpassed 1 billion users on the platform.
New in SaaS business listings this week we have a $361K B2B time and expense tracking software business, with a successful track record stretching more than a decade. The business is a very well-known brand, built off robust software with a clear value proposition that drives a low MRR churn rate of just c.0.3%. If you are interested in this business, please follow the link to request a prospectus.
In events news this week, the FE Team had a great time sponsoring SaaStock New York, and at SaaS Growth 2018 in London, where we had a chance to swap ideas with other thought leaders in the SaaS space. Next week, FE is looking forward to sponsoring the Boston E-Commerce Meetup where the expert panel (including Ross Beyeler, Founder of Growth Spark, Dale Bertrand, President of Fire&Spark, and Jeff Coppolo, SVP Global Business Development of BlueSnap) will be discussing Platform Wars: Magento, Shopify, BigCommerce and more. Click here to RSVP!
Continue reading below for more on the SurveyMonkey IPO, the Supreme Court ruling on e-commerce tax and Instagram TV.
- Long and successful track record of over a decade, creating a well-known brand
- Robust software with a clear value proposition driving a low MRR churn rate of c.0.3% in the LTM
- Loyal customer base with hundreds of customers and glowing reviews
- Low overhead allowing for high and stable net margin of c.90% in the past year
- Highly automated product reducing owner involvement
Yearly net profit: $92,600
Asking price: $361,000
In The News…
SurveyMonkey Files for IPO
Online survey company SurveyMonkey announced it had confidentially registered for an IPO.
Based in San Mateo, California, the online survey company has filed for IPO through parent company SVMK Inc. Having last raised money in 2014, SurveyMonkey was most recently valued at $2 billion, with main investors including Alphabet’s CapitalG and Tiger Global Management. Due to the private nature of the IPO, there are no financial details of the company to sift through yet. Private filings can be a way for companies to gauge investor interest while not having to disclose the full financial and operational details of the company. SurveyMonkey offers data collection for customer feedback that likely grows increasingly valuable in today’s market and since its last valuation in 2014.
DocuSign and Dropbox are two recent giant successful SaaS IPOs, and smaller companies like Zuora and zScalar have also been successful after IPO.
Supreme Court Rules on Online Retail Tax
The Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that internet retailers can be required to collect sales taxes in states where they have no physical presence.
A 1992 Supreme Court ruling mandated that online retailers and e-commerce businesses do not have to charge sales taxes on products. The most recent ruling from this past Thursday overturned the 1992 decision, and will mean that internet retailers may be subject to being required to collect taxes in states without a physical presence. In the decision, the Supreme Court for South Dakota, for which the US Supreme Court is providing this certiorari decision, agreed with the decision on the grounds that it represents a “retreat from the formalistic constrictions of a stringent physical presence test in favor of a more flexible substantive approach” while still calling for some formalism in the approach to who they may tax. South Dakota, in response to the decision, enacted a law that required all merchants to collect a 4.5% sales tax if they business pulls in “more than $100,000 in annual sales or more than 200 individual transactions in the state”, according to the New York Times. Apparent grounds for the decision appear to be the lack of commercial and competitive parity between brick and mortar and online retailers, as well as millions in taxes which states have said they are missing out on.
In short, it is no longer necessary for online companies to have a physical presence in a state to collect sales taxes.
Instagram Launches Instagram TV
Instagram has launched IGTV, a new app which will allow creators to upload hour-long videos.
In the most direct competitive move against YouTube yet, Instagram has launched an app which will serve as a platform for creators to share videos up to an hour long, up from the one-minute limit currently on the platform. The app will exist as a separate application as well as an in-app button on the Instagram home screen. Of the launch, Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom said, “It’s time for video to move forward, and evolve. IGTV is for watching long-form videos from your favorite creators.” The app will allow viewers to swipe through various content creators’ channels, as well as swipe up to visit a “browse” tab of personally recommended videos, popular videos, creators they have selected to follow and the option to resume watching previously-begun videos. Similar to YouTube, creators can nurture Instagram channels on which to post their videos and solicit followers.
While there will not be advertisements on IGTV yet, Systrom says it is “obviously a very reasonable place [for advertisements] to end up.”
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