Coinbase hit a $90 billion valuation in the private auction market before it goes public later this month, report says

Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong
Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong. Anthony Harvey / Stringer
  • Coinbase hit a $US90 ($117) billion valuation in its last private auction market, Bloomberg reported.
  • The valuation is based on the $US350 ($454) per share at which its stock was trading on the Nasdaq Private Market.
  • The crypto exchange is set to go public later in March on the NASDAQ under the ticker COIN.
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Shares in Coinbase hit a valuation of $US90 ($117) billion in a private auction market before the cryptocurrency exchange is goes public later this month, Bloomberg reported Monday.

The Nasdaq Private Market, which enables private companies to raise capital and manage secondary transactions, held a private auction that ended last Thursday, Bloomberg said, citing sources. It would mark the last private auction for Coinbase before it goes public.

Coinbase’s $US90 ($117) billion valuation is based off of the price its stock was trading at in the auction of $US350 ($454) per share. Some of the company’s shares had earlier traded at $US375 ($487) per share, which set it on it track for about a $US100 ($130) billion valuation, Bloomberg said. The company last month reached a $US77 ($100) billion valuation based on trades in the same private auction market.

The private auction market allows early investors and both current, and former, employees to sell their shares in companies that are about to go public. Coinbase’s valuation could vary once it lists, as only a tiny portion of its shares trade on the private market.

Coinbase’s latest valuation in private secondary trading could make its direct listing the largest technology firm debut since Facebook. Coinbase has listed a number of limitations with the current financial system, laying out the need for a “cryptoeconomy” in its S-1 filing. Relying on a string of third-parties for money movement is a timely and costly process, the company says.

As one of the largest global crypto exchanges, the company’s strengths lie in its suite of blockchain-integrated products, huge industry growth, rapid revenue jump, and its steady profitability. Coinbase ended 2020 with total revenue of $US1.3 ($2) billion. As the price of bitcoin soared from about $US7,000 ($9,087) to $US29,000 ($37,646), the company’s trading volumes more than doubled from nearly $US80 ($104) billion in 2019, to $US1.3 ($2) billion in 2020.