Feeds

Yelp boosts Bono's Elevation

IPO hits top of the charts

Boost IT visibility and business value

Bono’s investment fund Elevation Partners has scored a hit with Yelp’s IPO.

Shares in the user generated directory and review site surged 64 percent on its first day of trading on Nadaq on Friday. Shares soared to $US24.58, giving Yelp a market valuation of $US1.47 billion.

The San Francisco-based company raised $US107.3 million in the IPO, pricing the shares at $US15 each.

Elevation Partners was the first significant backer of Yelp! Investing an initial $US25 million in January 2010 and $US2.15 per share and increasing its total investment in Yelp to $100 million through a planned purchase of shares from vested employees and other eligible shareholders and $US8.136 per share.

Based on Yelp’s first day of trade high point of $US24.66 per share, Bono and Co’s stake would have been valued at around $US287 million. Elevation did not relinquish its stock in the IPO and as part of the initial investment deal cannot sell any of its shares for a period of six months.

Yelp was founded by CEO Jeremy Stoppelman and hip-hop entrepreneur Russel Simmons.

Stoppelman has retained around 11 percent of the voting power in Yelp following the share sale, according to SEC filings. Bessemer Venture Partners and Elevation Partners each will each have about 22 percent shareholding.

According to its IPO prospectus Yelp had 66 million monthly unique visitors and that it had 25 million published reviews at the end of last year. Proceeds of the IPO will be devoted to expanding rapidly overseas.

In November Yelp announced that it was moving into the Australian market partnering with Telstra.

The Australian expansion was a first for the US site in its partnership with Telstra’s directories arm Sensis. Yelp traditionally does not partner with local carriers or directories companies but Yelp co- founder and CEO Jeremy Stoppelman said it was important for the Australian launch to get accurate business data as it was difficult to acquire.

“This is the first time that we have worked with a traditional Yellow Pages company but in Australia it is particularly hard to access business data,” he said.

Under the deal Sensis provided 1 million business listings that allowed Yelp to ready the site for launch. Stoppleman said that Sensis would start selling on Yelp’s behalf once the Yelp community has built enough content to get audience traction, but could not predict how long that would take or give any audience measurement predictions.

The recommendation and search site has already expanded to Canada, UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Italy, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Spain.

“We aim to bring Yelp to the entire world if we can. We have been prioritising cultural closeness but we do want to be everywhere,” he said. ®

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.