Scribd Reaches for Unicorn Status


Timing may finally be right for a Scribd IPO.

Bloomberg and other financial news services report that Scribd, the content platform, is preparing an Initial Public Offering, possibly for later this year. Estimated valuations for the company – a subscription service for online content including books, magazines, news, and podcasts — are near $1 billion.

According to Andrew AlbanesePublishers Weekly senior writer, the IPO timing may finally be right for Scribd, which Trip Adler founded in 2007.

“I look out at the media landscape, and I see every other form of content available via subscription,” he notes. “The major book publishers remain resistant, but for how much longer?”

Scribd Reaches for Unicorn Status

Currently, about one million subscribers pay Scribd $8.99 monthly for subscription access to content, including e-books. The company says it has about $100 million in annual revenue and is profitable, Albanese notes.

“Scribd has very smartly positioned themselves as the company to handle subscription e-book access if and when the majors decide to give that a shot,” Albanese tells CCC. “After the pandemic, I think long held beliefs among publishers about consumer behavior are up for a fresh look.”

Every Friday, CCC’s “Velocity of Content” speaks with the editors and reporters of “Publishers Weekly” for an early look at the news that publishers, editors, authors, agents and librarians will be talking about when they return to work on Monday

Author: Christopher Kenneally

Christopher Kenneally hosts CCC's Velocity of Content podcast series, which debuted in 2006 and is the longest continuously running podcast covering the publishing industry. As CCC's Senior Director, Marketing, he is responsible for organizing and hosting programs that address the business needs of all stakeholders in publishing and research. His reporting has appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, The Independent (London), WBUR-FM, NPR, and WGBH-TV.
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