Cafepress files to raise $80 million in public offering

The filing from the print-on-demand site follows a slew of other Web IPOs, including an offering from LinkedIn and a filing from Groupon.

Cafepress, the Web site that lets users create custom t-shirts, posters, and bumper stickers, plans to raise as much as $80 million in an initial public offering.

It's the latest in a string of public offerings for Web companies, fueling talk that another Internet bubble is filling with air. Last week, the daily deal site Groupon filed papers to raise money in an initial public offering. Speculation has swirled that Zynga will soon file to sell stock. And just last month, professional-networking site LinkedIn raised $352 million in its IPO.

Cafepress may be a bit different, though. First, it's not seeking to raise a huge sum, at least not relative to the amounts other Web companies are considering raising. What's more, Cafepress is a greybeard by today's Web standards, having opened its doors in 1999. And the company was profitable last year.

In its filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, Cafepress said more than 13 million customers use its print-on-demand service. Cafepress shipped more than six million products in 2010.

In 2010, the company's earned $2.7 million on sales of $127.9 million, compared to $3.3 million in profits on revenue of $103.5 million a year earlier.

The company says in its filing that it intends to use the proceeds for "general corporate purposes, including working capital and capital expenditures." Cafepress CEO Bob Marino earned $433,308 in cash and stock last year.

The company's largest shareholder is Sequoia Capital with a 20.4 percent stake in Cafepress, followed by the two co-founders, Fred Durham and Maheesh Jain, who hold 19 percent and 17.3 percent of the stock respectively.

About the author

Jay Greene, a CNET senior writer, works from Seattle and focuses on investigations and analysis. He's a former Seattle bureau chief for BusinessWeek and author of the book "Design Is How It Works: How the Smartest Companies Turn Products into Icons" (Penguin/Portfolio).

 

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