Braze makes strong debut as public company

Braze exceeded expectations, raising over $500 million and seeing its shares surge on the first day of Nasdaq trading.

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Customer engagement platform Braze saw its share price leap nearly 40% on Wednesday as its IPO raised some $520 million. Shares were priced at $65, above the expected range of $55 to $65. Following the jump, the company had a market value of over $8 billion.

Braze, a New York-based company, was founded as Appboy in 2011 and re-branded in 2017. It orchestrates engagement between brands and customers across multiple channels. Co-founder and CEO Bill Magnuson rang the opening bell at Nasdaq on Wednesday to celebrate.

In a written statement, Magnuson said: “Today marks a significant milestone in our 10-year journey of helping brands forge strong bonds with their customers. My cofounders and I shared a dual conviction about the opportunities presented by mobile. First, fast growing new businesses would be born and built to be mobile first. And second, that generations-old companies would be driven by changing consumer behavior to transform the way they delivered products and services.

“Time has proved us right: We’ve seen a tremendous evolution take place, as consumer behaviors shifted to an ‘always-on’ mentality, and technology evolved, enabling us to capture real-time data and orchestrate personalized interactions.”

Dig deeper: Braze and Zendesk on how messaging channels are surging

Why we care. We’ve been writing about Braze since it was Appboy and it’s been one of the solutions mentioned in many case study discussions with brands. It has been a leader in emphasizing channel-agnostic engagement rather than prioritizing traditional channels like website and email; it also emphasizes understanding the context of the engagement in real time. The approach seems to have been successful.

About the author

Kim Davis
Kim Davis is currently editor at large at MarTech. Born in London, but a New Yorker for almost three decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space. He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020. Shortly thereafter he joined Third Door Media as Editorial Director at MarTech.

Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.

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