After months of waiting — as well as months in the shadow of more exciting direct listings such as Palantir — Asana (NYSE: ASAN) finally b
Oct. 1, 2020
After months of waiting — as well as months in the shadow of more exciting direct listings such as Palantir — Asana (NYSE: ASAN) finally became a publicly traded company yesterday, Wednesday September 30.
Unlike recent initial public offerings (IPO) such as Snowflake, Asana avoided much of the fanfare and fundraising that typically surrounds going public and opted to directly list instead. This means that it will simply sell shares to the public without the use of underwriters or intermediaries, and will also not be looking to raise capital unlike through a traditional IPO.
What is Asana’s stock symbol?
Palantir began trading at 12:35 pm EST on September 30 under the ticker symbol ASAN.
How much does Asana stock cost per share?
After its first day of trading, Asana shares closed at $28.80 apiece — 37.14% higher than its opening price.
When it first filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to go public months ago, Asana disclosed that private market trading in its shares in August ranged from $14.24 to $28 a share, with a volume-weighted average price of $25.11. Previously, trading had averaged $17.26 a share in the quarter ended July 31, and $15.98 a share in the April quarter, implying a 57% rise in 4 months which would coincide with the markets post-March rally.
The San Francisco-based company traded 40.4 million shares on its first day — more than a quarter of its total shares outstanding. With roughly 154 million shares outstanding currently, the company’s market capitalization comes in at around $4.6 billion.
However, at its closing price of $28.80, Asana’s valuation trades at about 22 times current year sales, which is well below other cloud software companies at the moment — Snowflake trades at more than 100 times, while Zoom trades around 60 times.
What does Asana do?
Straight from the horses mouth:
Asana is a web and mobile application designed to help teams organize, track, and manage their work. Forrester, Inc. reports that “Asana simplifies team-based work management.”
Asana’s mission statement is “to help humanity thrive by enabling all teams to work together effortlessly.”
The company is a collaborative software operator that uses timed programs and file management software to help teams keep track of their work, collaborate, and just make their jobs a bit more efficient. I have used Asana in previous jobs and it gets a solid thumbs up from me too — which is all that matters, right?
In its August SEC filings Asana boasted 82,000 paying customers with a combined 1.3 million users, as well as another 27 million free users.
Fun fact: Asana was co-founded by Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz, who serves as chief executive, while Palantir, which also debuted yesterday, was also co-founded by early Facebook investor and board member Peter Thiel.
What pies doesn’t Facebook have its fingers in right now?
Is Asana profitable?
A SaaS company going public in this day and age: what do you think?
No, unfortunately Asana is not yet profitable. The company lost $118.6 million in fiscal 2020, up from losses of $50.9 million in fiscal 2019.
The firm recently reported revenue for its fiscal second quarter ended July 31 of $52 million, up 57% year over year, with a non-GAAP loss of $13.7 million, or $0.34 a share. Asana also provided guidance for the third quarter of 2020, in which the company sees revenue of $53.5 million to $54.5 million, with a non-GAAP loss of $0.36 to $0.38 a share.
For the January 2021 fiscal year, Asana projects revenue of $210 million to $213 million, implying growth of 47% to 49%, and a non-GAAP loss of $1.30 to $1.33 a share.
Should I buy Asana stock?
At a time of such uncertainty there has also come much opportunity for companies like Asana to step in and fill a need for companies that must suddenly adop to a COVID-stricken world. However, investing at or around the time a company immediately goes public is usually a risky endeavor. Especially in recent times direct listings and IPOs tend to see wild stock swings, usually up, followed by a gradual decline.
Asana is currently trading at 22 times sales, which is far below other software firms at the moment, but perhaps it is best to wait and see what the company can deliver in the coming months as it is still losing a lot of money.
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