Survey-software seller Qualtrics, which was acquired by SAP in 2019 has filed for a U.S. initial public offering of up to $100 million. The initial pricing range of $20 to $24 per share would value Qualtrics at $12 billion to $14.4 billion, up from the $8 billion SAP paid.
Qualtrics will trade on the Nasdaq under the ticker “XM.” SAP presented the IPO as intended to "help to increase Qualtrics' autonomy and enable it to expand its footprint both within SAP's customer base and beyond."
Qualtrics has also agreed to a private placement of $550 million with technology investment firm Silver Lake. Additionally, Q II, an entity controlled by Qualtrics co-founder Ryan Smith, will invest $120 million.
Founded in 2002 and based in Provo, Utah Qualtrics sells software that helps businesses gauge how customers use their products to improve their offerings. Ryan Smith co-founded the company in 2002 with his brother and father, giving the family a 40% stake at the time of acquisition. Smith will remain chairman of the company, while Zig Serafin is CEO.
SAP’s former CEO Bill McDermott orchestrated the Qualtrics deal before leaving the company last year to take the job of CEO at ServiceNow. Qualtrics currently has about 3,370 full-time employees, up from 1,866 before selling to SAP.
In an interview, Smith spoke about Utah becoming a burgeoning tech hub, as it attracts a slew of talent from people moving out of the Bay Area. This trend began before the COVID-19 pandemic but has since picked up the pace due to the effects of the virus. “I think we’re in a time when we’re riding one of the biggest tech waves, the biggest industry waves. And Utah’s at the forefront,” Smith said.