Allbirds, Silicon Valley’s favorite shoe company, has filed for an IPO

Allbirds, the sustainable shoemaker, filed for an IPO, calling it the 1st sustainable public equity offering.

Allbirds — maker of the official sneaker of Silicon Valley — has filed for an IPO, describing the event as the “first sustainable public equity offering.”

Allbirds, Silicon Valley’s favorite shoe company, has filed for an IPO

The company preemptively tapered expectations, claiming that, as a public benefit corporation, not all decisions it makes will maximize shareholder value.

Yet its sustainability focus hasn’t hindered growth

According to the numbers, Allbirds is firing on all cylinders:

  • Revenue: From $194m in 2019 to $219m in 2020
  • Stores: From 1 location in 2017 to 30 as of last month
  • Product: From strictly footwear to apparel, including casual, performance, and outdoor styles

Unfortunately, losses are growing as well

The company has posted a net loss each of the last 3 years and in the 1st half of 2021, and doesn’t expect the trend to end soon.

This is a common thread among D2C leaders:

  • Warby Parker (which filed for an IPO last week) reported a net loss of ~$56m in 2020
  • Casper (already public) posted a net loss of $89m for 2020

Both Warby Parker and Casper have expanded their physical footprint, a track Allbirds will likely follow.

It’s also unclear if Allbirds is truly sustainable…

… or just more sustainable than its competitors.

  • Allbirds says its supply chain has been carbon neutral since 2019 and its sneakers have 30% less carbon footprint than the average pair.
  • The company is also currently facing a class-action lawsuit for making misleading sustainability claims.

One way to silence the critics would be to go perfectly sustainable. According to 2PM’s Web Smith, that would mean having a circular supply chain and not making new products.

Topics: Clothing Ipo

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