GoDaddy files for $100m IPO

Web hosting company GoDaddy announced plans on Monday to raise $100m in an initial public offering.

The Scottsdale, Arizona company, famous for its controversial ads, provides domain-name registration and website-hosting services to more than 12 million customers world-wide.

According to its filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, GoDaddy had revenues of more than $1.1bn in 2013 and made a loss of $199.8m. In the first quarter of this year it lost $51m on revenues of $320m.

The share sale, which is likely to be much more than the $100m initially announced, will come two years after GoDaddy was bought by current major shareholders include investment firms Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, Silver Lake and Technology Crossover Ventures for $2.25bn.

Since the sale, the 17-year-old company has toned down its controversial ads which had previously featured scantily clad models and led the New York Times to dub the company the “supremo of Super Bowl sleaze.”

The company also ran into trouble after initially lending its support to the Stop Online Piracy Act (Sopa), a bill aimed at limiting copyright infringement online that critics charged would censor free speech online. The company reversed its position amid threats of a boycott and Sopa was defeated amid a backlash from the tech companies and consumers.

GoDaddy abandoned IPO plans in 2006 citing market turmoil with founder and then CEO Bob Parsons telling staff the company would wait for "better and more stable times arrive." Since then, it has hired former Yahoo and Microsoft executive Blake Irving as its CEO and has bought a series of companies in web hosting, cloud services, local data and other areas in order to build up its services.

The company simultaneously announced that Parsons is resigning as executive chairman but will remain a board member.

The IPO comes amid a new wave of sales and deals in the tech sector. Last week Uber, the company behind the car-hailing smartphone app, filed for an IPO that values the company at $17bn.

Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan and Citigroup are the lead underwriters for the IPO.

Powered by article was written by Dominic Rushe in New York, for on Monday 9th June 2014 22.49 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010