Will CafePress Impress Wall Street in Its Public Market Debut?

CafePress, which can print just about anything on a mug, poster, iPhone case or T-shirt, is now trying to print money.

The San Mateo, Calif.-based company is looking to raise up to $80 million, for a market valuation of up to $305.6 million.

The company should price tonight at $16 to $18 apiece and start trading tomorrow on Nasdaq under the symbol PRSS.

UPDATE: This evening, CafePress announced that it priced above the range at $19 a share. It plans to sell 2.5 million shares, and shareholders are looking to unload another two million.

CafePress is the latest consumer-facing technology company to raise money in the public markets. Other recent IPOs falling into this category range from Groupon to Angie’s List and Yelp.

The two most recent, Angie’s List and Yelp, have both performed well.

Angie’s List, which aggregates consumer reviews of service providers, debuted in November at $13 a share and is now trading at $19.91 a share. Yelp, which also aggregates reviews of restaurants and other local businesses, has done even better. After pricing earlier this month at $15 a share, it now trades at $28.10 a share.

Before it pays underwriters, CafePress’s share of the proceeds will fall between $40 million and $45 million.

In 2011, the company recorded a profit of $3.6 million on revenues of $175 million. Last year, it had 2.7 million customers with an average order of $50 each. A year earlier, it had 2.1 million customers with an average order of $48.

Underwriters include J.P. Morgan, Cowen and Company, Raymond James, Janney Montgomery Scott, and Jefferies.

Latest Video

View all videos »

Search »

Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work