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Yeti fails to stay cool, abandons IPO plans

The IPO market is pretty busy these days with all the activity from Dropbox (DBX), Spotify, Zscaler (ZS) and a few others. But “challenging market conditions” have denied Yeti Holdings Inc an auspicious IPO date, and the company has abandoned its plans to get listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Courtesy – Flickr/Zachary Collier

Yeti had approached the US Securities and Exchange Commission with its IPO documents as early as in 2016 with a huge price tag of $5 billion and a ticker symbol ‘YETI’. The company had planned to use the proceeds from the IPO to clear some outstanding debt.

Claire’s and Galaxy Surfactants had similarly abandoned its IPO plans last year.

Yeti, which earned a cult following among outdoor enthusiasts with its hard-sided coolers, has been blessed with a strong revenue growth. The company’s sales grew from $89.9 million in 2013 to $468.9 million in 2015. During the first quarter of 2016, total revenue jumped 89% while the drinkware sales shot up by 704%.

Meanwhile, the company reported a loss in the first quarter of 2016 of $0.19 per share due to high stock-based compensation expenses. Around this time, rivals such as Coleman Co. and Igloo Products Corp. started bringing out coolers similar to Yeti, but at a cheaper price tag. Yeti has been struggling a bit since then, and has not published its earnings after the first quarter of 2016.

Yeti’s decision to drop out of the planned IPO would hit private equity firm Cortec Group Management Services LLC, which holds a majority ownership in the company. Cortec had invested close to $67 million in the trendy cooler company in 2012. According to a report by Wall Street Journal, Cortec was expected to make a huge profit of $3.3 billion when Yeti goes public.

Yeti, which was founded a decade ago by brothers — Roy and Ryan Seiders – has since proved to be one of those durable brands that have been successfully managed to build a strong following.

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