US-headquartered major crypto exchange Coinbase is said to be valued at USD 90bn in a private auction.
The company shares traded at some USD 90bn value last week, based on USD 350 a share, which is the price the stock was trading at the auction last Thursday on the Nasdaq Private Market, a division of Nasdaq focused on trading shares in companies before they go public, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
Furthermore, earlier in the auction, some shares had changed hands at USD 375, which would value Coinbase close to USD 100bn.
However, the report noted that private trading is more restrictive with usually smaller volumes than in the public markets, and “not a perfect picture of the company’s value.” The Nasdaq will set a reference price for investors prior to the direct listing, which is partly based on private trading activity, and these private trades “aren’t necessarily indicative of where the stock will actually trade,” it said.
This auction was the last time shares are being sold on the Nasdaq Private Market before Coinbase goes public in late March, the cited people said.
Also per Bloomberg, based on company filings and news reports, Coinbase founder Brian Armstrong’s “stock options could total a [USD] 3 billion windfall […] from the digital currency exchange’s direct listing as a trend of mega grants to tech founders continues full steam ahead.”
As reported, last year, Armstrong earned USD 56m of stock option awards on top of a USD 1m salary, as well as USD 1.8m in reimbursement for legal and security fees.
Coinbase filed to go public on February 25, via USD 1bn direct listing on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol COIN. In the filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the company said it had 43m verified users last year and 2.8m monthly transacting users, as well as USD 90bn worth of assets on the platform, USD 456bn lifetime trading volume, and over USD 3.4bn in total revenue as of December 31.
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