There’s nothing more hyperlocal than the on-demand class of startups, which feed off the everyday use cases spurred by a mobile-first world: whipping one’s phone out to order food from a local restaurant (Postmates, GrubHub, DoorDash), hail a ride (Uber and Lyft), or cut out a trip to the grocery store (Instacart, Shipt). Postmates’ founding ingenuity was to apply the convenience of ride-sharing to product delivery. Eight years later, it’s a food-delivery powerhouse, and its value may strike nearly $2 billion.
Square made its debut on the public markets yesterday. After its much-commented-on offering price of $9 per share, which some took as a shot across the bow for unicorn startups, the Jack Dorsey-helmed payments firm surged more than 45 percent in its first day of trading. The pressure may be off Square momentarily, but it won’t stay that way for long.
“[The markets] are probably as, or in many cases, more open to [hyperlocal companies] today, largely because they’re seeing some early success in other models,” said First Analysis’ Todd Van Fleet. “They know it can be done; it’s just a question of having the right model. Whereas Groupon may have created a disconcerting tone across the space, you have had the success of Angie’s List, Yelp and even mobile payments players like Square prove that a portion of the [local business marketplace] can be won.”
What: Pulling back on the IPO throttle
This week Groupon said it would cancel the roadshow for its long-touted IPO, which was set to take place this fall and will now be postponed indefinitely.