Mobile gaming company AppLovin raises $2 billion in IPO


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Mobile apps and games platform AppLovin raised $2 billion in an initial public offering Thursday that valued the Applovin mobile gaming company at $28.6 billion.

The Palo Alto, California-based firm makes software to help developers market and monetize their apps, and it also has its own portfolio of more than 200 Applovin mobile games.

AppLovin developer software has more than 410 million daily active users, according to its regulatory filing. But investors weren’t immediately enthused about AppLovin mobile gaming platform, which is trading under the ticker symbol “APP.”

After listing at $80 per share, the midpoint of its estimated range, the stock closed down 18% at about $65, putting its market capitalization around $23 billion.

Founder and CEO Adam Foroughi told he’s focused more on the company’s future than the present-day stock moves.”What we were trying to do is partner up with investors who see the three- to five-year plan,” Foroughi said. “Every stock goes up and down. We can’t control the short term, but we can certainly control that long-term outcome and that’s what we work really hard to do.”

AppLovin mobile gaming company, which is backed by private equity firm KKR & Co., is just the latest mobile gaming industry to go public, following kid-popular video game firm Roblox (RBLX) last month and Applovin developer platform Unity Software (UUU) in September, among others.

In 2020, AppLovin generated $1.45 billion in revenue, a 46% increase from the prior year, but reported a nearly $126 million net loss. It had reported a $119 million profit in 2019.

AppLovin estimates that the mobile app ecosystem will grow to $283 billion by 2024, up from $189 billion last year.

While demand for console games was boosted during the pandemic, AppLovin said its games, which are more casual and played on mobile devices, experienced little impact.

AppLovin mobile games portfolio reaches 200 monthly active users, and the audience data from that activity helps inform its developer software platform. It’s “similar to the way Netflix has evolved their business: They … show us content based on our past viewership patterns, and then they started investing in original content, which exploded the popularity of their platform,” Foroughi said. “Our own apps give us very powerful audience insights … that feedback into our recommendation software and increase the efficacy of the platform.”

With the IPO funds, the mobile gaming industry plans to invest in creating more original content, Foroughi said. It will also use some of the proceeds to make acquisitions, according to its S-1 filing.

Since 2018, the company has invested $1 billion in 15 acquisitions and partnerships to grow its content library and software capabilities, the filing said. Most recently, AppLovin announced in February it would buy mobile app measurement and marketing firm Adjust.

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James Robert is a journalist who covers all the social media and tech-related news for SG-educate, the world's largest multimedia news agency. He reports on tech from all over the world, focusing mostly on social media platforms. He has worked as a digital editor and online coverage of global breaking news on tech and big stories, reaching millions of readers across multiple platforms.

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