The vegan food and beverage producer Oatly (NASDAQ: OTLY) has raised $1.4 billion in its market debut on Tuesday, valuing the company at $10 billion. Initial share prices of $17 rose by almost 30% during forenoon trading.
Despite recent sell-off pressure in the U.S. equity market, Oatly CEO Toni Petersson is confident in the timing of the IPO, stating that “we’re going to use the proceeds to expand our production capacity, that's why the time is right now.”
The Swedish multinational is specialized in the production of dairy substitutes, primarily made from oats. Driven by high demand, the company has recently opened a new production facility in Utah and doubled capacity at its site in the Netherlands. Factories in China and Singapore are also expected to open this year.
The rising popularity of dairy substitutes has enabled Oatly to expand quickly into the US market over the past years and can now be found in over 18,500 retail and coffee shops across the country. This growth resulted in a doubling of revenue to $421 million in the past year.
The sustainability focussed brand has attracted some popular investors, including Oprah Winfrey, Jay-Z, Natalie Portman, and Starbucks founder Howard Schultz. State-backed China Resources took a 46% stake in 2016 via a joint venture with belgian private equity firm Verlinvest, making them largest shareholders.