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Blue Apron falls 9% on fourth day as a public company



Blue Apron sends you the ingredients to help you cook delicious meals, but some investors are considering its shares unsavory.

The meal kit delivery company, which went public on the New York Stock Exchange last week, has had a rough debut on the stock market. After significantly lowering its IPO price range, the company priced its IPO at $10 per share. The stock closed Wednesday below $9.

Most companies go up on the first day of trading because bankers recommend a “pop,” where they target a share increase of at least 20% to make a good first impression on the public. These companies often experience a decline in the coming days, but Blue Apron went sour fast.

The company closed flat at $10.01 on Thursday and then went down on Friday. Shares were up slightly on the half-day Monday, but post-Fourth of July Wednesday was tough for Blue Apron. The market cap is now lower than $1.8 billion, a discount to the $2 billion private round that they fetched in 2015.

Some investors are concerned that Amazon’s purchase of Whole Foods could create more competition for Blue Aprons, a field that’s already saturated. Others worry that Blue Apron is having a problem with customer retention.

The current stock price is less relevant for employees and early investors who are often restricted by “lock-up” arrangements, where they can’t sell their shares for the first six months or even a year out. But public investors are watching the early days of Blue Apron to see whether the market has an appetite for it.

It’s also a bad sign for other companies looking to go public right now, particularly other food startups. Bankers pay close attention to IPO “windows” and they won’t bring anyone public when the window is considered shut.

Real estate site Redfin recently unveiled its IPO filing, suggesting that the company is looking to go public later this month. It might be the only internet IPO for July.



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