An oddity in Stripe's internal valuation
After Stripe's lowered valuation, Axios finds that certain figures coming from the payments giant carry a peculiar twist.
Driving the news: Stripe's latest internal assessment of its 409A valuation came with a 28% drop to its valuation, now just above $74 billion, the WSJ reports. A source confirmed the cut to Axios.
Why it matters: At issue is something called a 409A valuation. This is an internal accounting measure used to price employee stock, not equal to an outside investment valuation.
- 409A valuations usually clock in below their last venture capital round, as investors often have liquidation preferences and other terms that make their shares more valuable.
The intrigue: According to the same source, Stripe's last 409A valuation (around $103 billion) appears to actually have been higher than its venture capital price ($95 billion).
Meanwhile, Stripe declined to comment for this story, and Axios has not yet determined how its 409A valuation could have been higher.
Of note: Startups often lower their 409A valuations as a way to recruit new hires, as lower prices give employees more upside. Instacart notably did so this year.