Freshworks jumps 36% in trading debut after pricing IPO at $36 per share

A Freshworks Inc logo is seen on a smartphone screen.
  • Shares of Indian software firm Freshworks jumped as much as 36% in their trading debut on Wednesday.
  • The firm priced its initial public offering at $US36 ($AU50) per share Tuesday evening.
  • Freshworks aims to compete with Salesforce as it tries to disrupt the customer relationship management market.
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Shares of Freshworks jumped as much as 36% on Wednesday during its Nasdaq debut.

The stock hit an intraday high of $US48.75 ($AU67) Wednesday. Freshworks on Nasdaq trades under the ticker “FRSH.”

The firm priced its initial public offering at $US36 ($AU50) per share Tuesday evening. Freshworks sold 28.5 million common shares, raising $US1 ($AU1) billion in proceeds and garnering a valuation of over $US10 ($AU14) billion valuation.

Founded in India, Freshworks, now a San Mateo, California-based software company, builds customer management platforms that have gained the attention of clients including Honda, Cisco, and American Express.

Its business boomed during the pandemic as companies rushed to digitize most of their customer operations to cater to the growing demand of clients whose employees were mostly stuck at home as large swathes of the world shutdown, founder CEO and Girish Mathrubootham previously told Insider.

Freshworks aims to compete with software behemoth Salesforce as it tries to disrupt the customer relationship management market, Mathrubootham added.

Though Freshworks is based in the US, the majority of its employees are based in Chennai, India. It has other offices in 10 other locations, including London, Berlin, and Sydney.

The idea of Freshworks was borne out of Mathrubootham’s frustration with the lack of response from a moving company, which damaged his television during the process in 2010. More than a decade later, he has grown his firm from just focusing on customer support to one that provides software for every customer interaction.

“We started in a 700 square foot warehouse in Chennai in 2010,” Mathrubootham said in the regulatory filing. “We didn’t plan nor expect to change the world. Our dreams came in increments, each building on the next and expanding our vision over time.”

Today, the company, among India’s first unicorns – startups worth more than $US1 ($AU1) billion – and is one of the country’s best-known software-as-a-service firms.

Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, and Bank of America Securities acted as lead book-runners for the offering.