Tuesday 23 February 2021 4:52 pm

Plant-based milk company Oatly files for US IPO

Plant-based milk company Oatly, which is backed by Oprah Winfrey, today said it had confidentially filed for an initial public offering (IPO).

The IPO marks a profitable era for plant-based alternatives, which flies in the face of the EU’s ban on using marketing terms such as ‘oat milk’ or ‘vegan cheese’ last year.

A source close to the situation told City A.M. the valuation could be anywhere between $5bn and $10bn.

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July saw the Sweden-based company raise a $200m equity investment from a group led by Blackstone Group. The company faced backlash following the funding with customers criticising the private equity’s credentials on sustainability.

Oatly has received a flurry of celebrity backing and investors, including rapper Jay-Z’s entertainment company Roc Nation and members of the Blackstone Group which hosts Natalie Portman and former Starbucks chief Howard Shultz in addition to Winfrey.

It is also backed by Belgian family investment group Verlinvest, which bought a majority stake in Oatly in 2016, and China Resources.

It comes amid a rush of IPO activity as companies look to take advantage of the market rally. Earlier this month dating app Bumble filed its IPO plans, valuing the company at $1bn.

Oatly’s listing is subject to a review by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Read more: Alphabet-backed health insurance startup Oscar aims to raise more than $1bn in upcoming IPO

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