Amid Snap's struggles as a public company, CEO Evan Spiegel gives this advice to founders: 'Don't go public'
- Snap CEO Evan Spiegel was asked at an investor conference what advice he had for founders taking companies public for their first time.
- He responded, "Don't go public?"
- Snap's stock has rebounded this year after a wildly unpopular app redesign and increased competition from Facebook-owned Instagram. But shares are still trading below its IPO price.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Snap CEO Evan Spiegel had some #nofilter advice for founders taking companies public for their first time.
"Don't go public?" Spiegel said on stage at a Goldman Sachs investor conference in New York on Wednesday.
It's been little more than two years since Spiegel rang the opening bell on Wall Street. The photo messaging company's stock has struggled to trade above its IPO price of $17 a share, closing at $16.90 on Wednesday.
Snap is recovering from a wildly unpopular app redesign and a delayed update for Android users, in the same period that competitors like Instagram debuted features like Stories and duplicated its augmented reality filters. The company stopped adding and actually started losing users, though user growth has turned around so far in 2019.
The audience, mostly consisting of investors, laughed at Spiegel's remark. The moderator cracked that they would edit his reply out of the webcast recording, Alex Heath, a reporter at tech news site The Information, said in a tweet.
Spiegel then got serious.
"I think for us going public has really been a trust-building exercise with a totally new set of investors. And I think that, frankly, is something that takes time," said Spiegel, Snap's cofounder, who took it public in spring 2017.
"If we look at our investors who were private investors with us for many, many years, we build relationships with them by telling them we were gonna take a big risk, telling them what our vision was, and then executing. And over three, four, five years, we've built a lot of trust with those shareholders.
"We just have to go through the same process now with the new set of shareholders and building new relationships," Spiegel said. "And I think we just have to execute on the business, frankly, and deliver results."
Get the latest Snap stock price here.