Freshworks, a business software company, on Wednesday, announced that it has priced its initial public offering at $36 per share, raising $1.03 billion, and valuing the company at $10.13 billion. Freshworks had earlier expected to raise $969 million at the top end of its increased price range of $32 to $34 per share.
The software-as-a-service firm helps businesses with customer management; offering products that include a messaging platform, an artificial intelligence-powered chatbot for customer support, and call-center solutions that promise shorter wait times.
With the new investment, Freshworks joins a number of major companies in the software business sector that have taken advantage of heated U.S. capital markets over the past 18 months. Most software initial public offerings during that period have been well-received by investors who see room for growth in the sector, even after the pandemic, as the adoption of hybrid work models by companies across the world drive up demand for enterprise software products.
Freshworks’ Chief Executive Officer, Girish Mathrubootham, mentioned that the code name of the much anticipated initial public offering was “Project Superstar”, named “after the most successful movie star from Tamil Nadu, Rajnikanth,” he said.
Freshworks shares are scheduled to start trading on Wednesday on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “FRSH”, and the offering is expected to close on September 24, subject to customary closing conditions. The company becomes the first Indian-origin software products startup to list on the US stock exchanges.
Freshworks is one of the earliest success stories of Indian startups in the software-as-a-service (Saas) sector. The company was founded in India in 2010 by Girish Mathrubootham and Shan Krishnasamy. Since then, it has raised funds from investors including Accel, Tiger Global Management, CapitalG, and Sequoia Capital India. The funds raised in the early years after its inception were mainly used to enable research and development of product evolution, new product augmentation, and marketing campaigns.
The company started out as Freshdesk and was only rebranded as Freshworks in 2017. It is currently based in San Mateo, California.