CarGurus share price soars 72% on listing day

13 Oct 2017

CarGurus’ long-awaited listing on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange went off sensationally well for the company yesterday when the share price spiked more than 72 percent on the first day of trading.

The company’s share had been priced to list at $16 U.S. — already higher than expected — but jumped to $27.58 by the end of the day. The company’s market value is now expected to exceed $3 billion.

The largest shareholders in CarGurus are now Argonaut 22, T. Rowe Price, Allen & Co., and Langley Steinert, CEO and founder of CarGurus, who owns 29 percent of the shares and retains more than 60 percent of the voting power in the company, in large part due to his unwillingness to take on venture money when he was starting the company.

CarGurus says it hopes to use the IPO proceeds to get established internationally – in Canada, the U.K., and Germany. (These sites have been up and running for a while.) It will also focus on hiring, looking for new developers and engineers in particular, the company said.

In Germany, a CarGurus site went live early in April this year. SimilarWeb measured 120,000 visits to the desktop and mobile sites in September. So, there’s a long way to go. The site explains its positioning on the home page: used-auto search results are displayed on the basis of market value and the reputation (rating) of the dealer – not on how much he paid for his listing (meaning, there are no upsells).

In the U.K., CarGurus launched in 2015, and received 2.4 million visits in September, according to SimilarWeb.

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Brian Blum

Brian Blum covers the U.S., Canada and Israel for Classified Intelligence Report, and contributes to our special reports and research projects. Originally from San Francisco and now based in Jerusalem, he has been with the AIM Group since 2004. He is the president of Blum Interactive Media, specializing in writing and multimedia content development for online, print, video and audio. His clients include newspapers, universities and non-profits. He is currently working on a book about the billion-dollar bankruptcy of a once high-flying Israeli startup.