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E-Commerce Unicorn Wish Files for IPO

Wish, an e-commerce platform known for selling goods from Asia at rock-bottom prices, has filed a preliminary S-1 with the Securities and Exchange Commission in preparation for its initial public offering (IPO).

Wish's parent company, ContextLogic, plans to list its shares on the Nasdaq stock exchange using the ticker symbol WISH. Since this is the company's initial regulatory filing, Wish listed a $1 billion placeholder as the amount it hopes to raise, and has yet to disclose how many shares it will offer or a timeline for its debut.

According to the filing, the company's mission is to "Bring an affordable and entertaining mobile shopping experience to billions of consumers around the world."

Image source: Getty Images.

In 2019, Wish reported revenue of $1.9 billion, up 10% year over year, though that doesn't tell the whole story. The company's revenue grew 57% year over year in 2018 and has achieved a compound annual growth rate of 90% since 2015. Wish is still awash in red ink, with a net loss of $136 million in 2019.

For the first nine months of 2020, the company continued its impressive top-line growth, with revenue of $1.75 billion, up 32%. Wish's losses also continued to grow, with a net loss of $176 million, up from $5 million in the prior-year period. The company also boasts a rock-solid balance sheet with about $1.1 billion in cash and short-term investments and no debt.

Wish also boasts impressive customer and merchant metrics. The company has a presence in 100 countries, with more than 100 million monthly active users and a network of 500,000 merchants. Wish has also been the No. 1 most downloaded shopping app in each of the past three years.

The company is focused on shoppers who may not be able to spring for the $119 per year necessary to join Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) Prime, targeting customers from every socioeconomic group.

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