Japan's marketplace app Mercari goes for IPO

By Natasha Spencer

- Last updated on GMT

Japan's marketplace app Mercari goes for IPO
Peer-to-peer marketplace app operator, Mercari, has applied to place its shares on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

Biggest IPO?

At present, the initial public offering (IPO) is anticipated to be listed by the end of 2017, with an expectation to possibly generate over 100 bn yen (€765 mn). At this amount, Mercari has the potential to be the largest IPO, the Nikkei business daily reports.

If Mercari’s IPO does reach this figure, the company will overtake Sushiro Global Holdings’ year-to-date high figure of 98.8 bn yen (€12.5 bn).

Asian influence

Three-year old Mercari will likely be placed on the Asian startup market, following its success in both the US markets as a competitor to both Amazon and eBay.

Appealing to females in the 20s and 30s demographics, its at-present niche audience uses the Japanese app to purchase and promote the sale of beauty and personal care items.

On 21st July 2017, the marketplace app passed a preliminary screening. This hurdle followed recent criticisms relating to the company's internal management systems and processes after personal information was leaked in June 2017 and individuals were caught trading money to enable credit card purchases.

Application process

While this may halt the Japanese authorities' decision on whether the company goes public, Mercari is moving forward with its application to position itself on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

This expedited process enables Mercari to undertake a faster process when the formal application is completed and sent. The application is expected to be made in August 2017.

The Tokyo-based startup, which currently operates in Japan, the US and the UK, aims to use its hopeful and strong proceeds from its IPO application to expand its business overseas.

Mercari’s latest business year, which ended in June 2016, created sales of ¥12.2 bn (€1.5 bn) and a net profit of ¥3 bn (€378 mn), after experiencing a loss of ¥1.1 bn (€139 mn) last year.

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