Grocery delivery unicorn Instacart filed privately to go public yesterday, a long-awaited event for the well-known private company. During its startup days, Instacart raised huge amounts of capital and grew rapidly. When the pandemic arrived, Instacart’s business turbocharged as demand for its service reached a fever pitch.
The last year has been less kind. Growth slowed as Instacart lapped a year of revenue expansion driven by COVID-19 and more folks staying home and ordering in. That Instacart held onto some of that 2020 energy and managed to grow last year is something of a feat.
However, the company was not priced during its most recent venture capital rounds with slowing growth in mind, leading to Instacart revaluing itself earlier in the year. The action helped clear the path for more employee-friendly compensation and reset expectations for its exit.
That exit is now before us. We lack the company’s formal S-1 filing because Instacart took the “file privately before filing publicly to go public” route. But because we are now in the chute for an eventual Instacart IPO, let’s take stock of the company’s recent news and ask a few questions.
The key questions in our mind heading into Instacart’s debut concern its growth, economics and revenue mix. As you can imagine, these are interlinked.