How To Turn a Pair of Roller Skates Into a Lamborghini
It could be the most awaited IPO of the past decade, and it’s still incredibly secretive. Nobody knows much about the details yet, but information keeps dripping out as the company gets closer to its public debut.
I’m talking about Airbnb. And the path it’s been taking to go public has been just as shrouded in mystery as that first paragraph was.
We got word a few months ago that the company had filed confidentially for its initial public offering. But since then, we haven’t heard much besides speculation as to when it will go down and how much the company will be worth.
Until this week, that is. Just a couple of days ago, we found out that the company has opted to list its shares on the Nasdaq Global Select Market.
That’s big news for the Nasdaq because it’ll be the biggest IPO it's hosted since Facebook in 2012. And it’s big news for investors because that puts us one step closer to a publicly traded Airbnb.
But the biggest beneficiaries of the news are the people who are already Airbnb shareholders. Their ranks are mostly composed of founders and early employees of the company.
But there are also a few early investors who saw the potential of a short-term rental platform like the one Airbnb was building.
Those investors, who didn’t work at the company to build it but, instead, provided the capital to get it moving and keep it growing, are getting closer and closer to a massive payday!
One Step Back and Two Steps Forward
Earlier this year, people were asking if Airbnb could survive the coronavirus and the lockdowns and recessions it would cause. The company was desperately seeking emergency funding to stay afloat as customers canceled rentals en masse.
In order to get that funding, it had to take a serious valuation cut. Airbnb’s last funding round, back in 2017, valued the private company at a staggering $31 BILLION. Securing the $2 billion in debt financing it needed to weather the COVID-19 storm knocked that valuation down to $18 billion. It sweetened the deal just enough to get investors to buy its bonds.
But since this spring, the company has seen a revival in its short- and medium-term rental business and its long-term rentals never skipped a beat.
People were looking to get away from the city for a weekend or get away from hot spots for a few weeks. Some were even booking long-term rentals to take advantage of working from home.
And according to filings the company has to make for tax purposes, its valuation has been growing at about 10% a quarter since the debt funding round in April.
As of September 30, those forms valued the company at $22 billion. By the time shares hit the open market, that could be back up as high as $27.5 billion or more.
Still a ways off the $31 billion valuation it had in 2017, but far higher than every private funding round before that.
Now let’s talk about why all those numbers are so important.
Turning $20K Into $220M
When Airbnb was first seeking funding, it got a seed investment of $20,000. The valuation at the time of that seed round was $2.5 million, and that investor got a little less than 1% of the equity.
That was back in 2009. Now, barely 10 years later, with the company planning its IPO, that $20,000 investment has the potential to be worth over $220 million!
That’s a 1,099,900% profit! That’s like turning a pair of roller skates into a race car!
And even the later investors will make a killing when the shares start trading on the open markets. Those who invested in the second round in 2010 are looking at a potential 39,000% gain.
They’ll be turning every $1,000 into well over $390,000.
The folks who invested in the third private round in 2011 will cash out to the tune of a 2,000% gain. They’ll be turning their $1,000 investments into $21,000 or more.
Even the investors who were late to the party and didn’t get in until 2013 and 2014 are taking home triple-digit paydays as soon as the shares hit the market.
Any gains they get once the stock starts trading will just be the icing on a moist, delicious cake.
But why am I telling you how much the insiders at Airbnb are going to make? Why am I not telling you how to trade the IPO?
Well, it’s because I think there are far better opportunities out there for you than the Airbnb IPO — better than any IPO for that matter or any public stock...
Opening Up the VIP Section
I’m talking about opportunities in the private markets. Opportunities many of you likely know nothing about or didn’t even know you could participate in.
You see, these kinds of investments, those in private companies, have always been off-limits to 99% of investors. They’re like the VIP section of the financial world.
For starters, you had to be accredited. That means you needed to be wealthy. Accredited investors have a net worth of at least $1 million (not including their home) or have made over $200,000 a year for the past two years and expect to make that much or more this year as well.
That cuts out a lot of people right there.
Then, to add difficulty, these deals are always shrouded in secrecy (much like the details about the Airbnb IPO). That means you have to be incredibly well-connected to even hear about them in the first place.
And on top of all that, this isn’t like buying a publicly traded stock. You don’t just enter some letters and numbers and click “buy.” And the financial information (if it even exists) is sketchy at best and sometimes fraudulent at worst.
The terms of the investments were also complicated by esoteric language only seasoned experts could even hope to understand.
It was nearly impossible for even those with enough money to find investments and figure out if they were worth the time.
But that’s all changed. Thanks to a landmark act of Congress, everyone over the age of 18 can now invest in the private markets. And, thanks to that act, the tangled web has been somewhat cleared and the markets have become more standardized.
That’s opened up an opportunity for retail investors to get in on private deals like Airbnb that will turn a $1,000 investment into an $11 million windfall.
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Taking Main Street Private
It goes by many names, but the most common one is crowdfunding. You’re probably familiar with campaigns on sites like Kickstarter, where people look for donations from their friends and family to support a project.
But there’s a profitable side to the industry as well. It’s called equity crowdfunding and it’s giving average investors the ability to buy shares of private companies that could be the next Airbnb or Tesla.
It’s opened the doors to the VIP section of the market by removing the income restrictions that used to keep so many people on the sidelines.
And it’s removed some of the opacity by requiring companies to file standardized forms with the SEC detailing each investment opportunity.
Additionally, thanks to technology, these investment opportunities are relatively easy for anyone with an internet connection to find and participate in.
Now everyday folks can be the venture capitalists walking away with 1,000,000% gains when their private company goes public. And they can get invested with as little as $100.
So, you don’t even need $20,000 to put into a seed round to be the next person to cash out with a life-changing profit. A 1,000,000% gain on $100 is still a comfortable $1 MILLION.
But the one thing the law didn’t change was how difficult the terms of the investments can be to understand.
They detail the capital structure of the company. They include pre-money and post-money valuations and the modeling assumptions used to judge those values. They give the terms for the investment and let you know about any potential future dilution of shares and other risks to your investment.
They contain financial statements from the company along with projections of future operational growth. They’ll have the current ownership structure (who owns how much of the company) and if it’s a good company, it’ll tell you how much they paid for those shares.
That’s not even close to everything you’ll find on the forms detailing the investment, but it’s already a lot — enough to make most people’s eyes roll back and heads spin.
So I want to offer my services as a guide...
My Pain, Your Gain
You know the old saying, “no pain, no gain?” Well, it turns out it doesn’t always have to be the same person experiencing the pain and the gain.
In this case, I want to make my pain turn into your gain. You see, I’ve spent my career analyzing financial reports and SEC filings. I got my start in finance at one of the biggest investment banks in the world. I’ve advised startups looking for investors and multi-millionaire investors looking for startups.
Most of it has been fun, but I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t a lot of growing pain involved, too.
But now, after years in the game, I’ve got a Rolodex and an understanding of the markets that makes my colleagues jealous.
And now that the private markets that helped me cement my own financial future are open to everyone, I want to help you the same way I helped those super-wealthy investors earlier in my career.
I want to be your guide. I want to help you find the best investments with the biggest shot of being wild success stories like Airbnb. And I want to help you avoid the ones destined to fail.
I don’t want you to go out into the private markets and get burned and decide they’re all a scam. I want you to have all the information and training of the professionals. And since I’ve been doing this a while for myself (and have stayed pretty well-fed so far), I think I’m the perfect guy to help you capitalize on these new opportunities.
I can comb through the financials and filings. I can break down the structure and the terms for you. I can do for you what I used to do for billionaires when I worked on Wall Street.
And since I figure you need the help more than they did, I’m not even going to charge a fraction of what they used to pay for my services. I really want to help everyone, and charging thousands of dollars a year for my advice isn’t doing that.
So I’ve convinced the publishers here to let me offer a massive discount for a limited time.
There’s No Time to Waste
Today only, and for a limited number of people only, you can get access to all of my research (past, present, and future) and all of the private investments we’re already participating in plus countless more to come.
Once you join, you’ll have access to three open private investments we think have the promise to be massive companies in the very near future.
But you’ll need to hurry.
Not only can I offer this discount for a limited time, but one of our investments closes today. Once it’s closed, it will never be open at the same terms again.
This is one of the best I’ve seen in a while and I really want to make sure you get the chance to take advantage of it before it’s too late.
So don’t delay and join me and the thousands of others already profiting in the private markets.
To your wealth,
After graduating Cum Laude in finance and economics, Jason designed and analyzed complex projects for the U.S. Army. He made the jump to the private sector as an investment banking analyst at Morgan Stanley, where he eventually led his own team responsible for billions of dollars in daily trading. Jason left Wall Street to found his own investment office and now shares the strategies he used and the network he built with you. Jason is the founder of Main Street Ventures, a pre-IPO investment newsletter, and co-authors The Wealth Advisory income stock newsletter. He also contributes regularly to Wealth Daily. To learn more about Jason, click here.
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