Oatly, the Blackstone-backed Swedish vegan milk maker, is eyeing a valuation as excessive as $10bn in a US itemizing that will faucet into each the IPO growth and shoppers’ rising thirst for plant-based alternate options to animal merchandise.
The Malmo-based group stated on Tuesday that it had submitted a confidential submitting for an preliminary public providing with the US Securities and Change Fee, lower than a yr after a funding spherical led by Blackstone additionally introduced in Oprah Winfrey and Jay-Z’s Roc Nation firm as buyers, valuing Oatly at about $2bn.
Two folks briefed on the state of affairs stated it was a New York itemizing with a valuation as excessive as $10bn. Oatly declined to remark.
The providing is anticipated to happen following the SEC’s assessment, topic to market situations, Oatly stated.
The principle goal of the float can be to lift cash to fund progress, stated one of many folks, however an inventory would supply an opportunity to money in for buyers who vary from Blackstone to the Hollywood actor Natalie Portman and the Belgian household funding group Verlinvest, which purchased a majority stake in Oatly 5 years in the past.
Oatly offered about $200m of merchandise in 2019, roughly double the earlier yr, and had aimed to double gross sales once more in 2020, although no figures have been made public.
The oat milk specialist, which additionally makes plant-based ice cream and yoghurt, has tapped into rising demand for plant-based equivalents to dairy, fuelled by environmental issues — particularly round emissions from cattle — and a notion of such meals as wholesome.
Within the US, complete retail gross sales of non-dairy milks rose 28 per cent to an estimated $2.9bn in 2020, in line with market researchers Mintel.
That was dominated by almond milk, which accounted for $1.8bn. However in line with the Good Meals Institute, a analysis and lobbying non-profit for different proteins, shoppers have embraced a rising vary of plant-based dairy components together with seeds, legumes, pulses, grains and nuts.
The institute stated gross sales of oat-based dairy merchandise jumped nearly eight-fold within the US in 2019. Oatly’s signature oat milk was particularly profitable forward of the pandemic with a “barista version” utilized in cafés that produces a froth just like that of cows’ milk for cappuccinos and macchiatos.
Rival Chobani, a New York-based firm that constructed its popularity on plant-based yoghurts, has additionally reportedly been contemplating an inventory, whereas Oatly competes with corporations reminiscent of France’s Danone, which has branched out from a historical past in dairy to supply plant-based alternate options such because the Alpro model.
Oatly confronted a buyer backlash on social media over its resolution to simply accept funding from Blackstone final yr, with shoppers criticising the personal fairness group’s sustainability credentials and a historical past of assist for Donald Trump by its chief government Stephen Schwarzman.
Oatly stated on the time: “Our guess is that when Blackstone’s funding in our oat-based sustainability motion brings them bigger returns than they might have been in a position to get elsewhere . . . a robust message will probably be despatched to the worldwide personal fairness markets, one written in the one language our critics declare they are going to hearken to: revenue.”
Corporations have been dashing to record in latest months and make the most of an fairness market rally that has bolstered IPOs reminiscent of that of Blackstone-backed courting app Bumble, which raised $2.15bn in a Nasdaq itemizing this month, and Israeli cellular video games firm Playtika, which raised $2.2bn in January.