SAP’s Qualtrics files for IPO of ‘experience management’ software

The company’s “experience management” is part of the new crop of “systems of action.”
Written by Tiernan Ray, Senior Contributing Writer

As announced back in July, SAP this afternoon filed paperwork with the Securities & Exchange Commission for an initial public offering of its Qualtrics subsidiary valuing the stock at $20 to $24 per share. The pricing is preliminary, and the amount of stock to be sold is not yet specified.

The company's shares are to trade under the ticker symbol "XM" on the Nasdaq. Morgan Stanley and JP Morgan are the lead underwriters of the offering.

The offering is something of a deja vu: SAP purchased Qualtrics in 2019 from a group of venture capital firms, including Accel Partners, Sequoia Capital and Insight Venture Management for $8 billion in cash just before Qualtrics went public. 

Following this offering, SAP will still own the vast majority of Qualtrics stock. SAP in July said it has no intention of spinning off the business, and considers the acquisition to have been a great success. 

SAP presented the IPO as intended to "help to increase Qualtrics' autonomy and enable it to expand its footprint both within SAP's customer base and beyond."

Qualtrics's software is for what the company calls "experience management." The company claims that experience management software is a new category of software that it said "enables organizations to succeed in today's experience economy."

"Our XM Platform helps organizations both design and improve the experiences that turn their customers into fanatics, employees into ambassadors, products into obsessions, and brands into religions," the company says.

The software includes four modules, called "CustomerXM," "EmployeeXM," "ProductXM," and "BrandXM." 

Qualtrics reports over 12,000 customers and 3,300 employees in the prospectus. The company's revenue in the twelve months ended in September rose over 36%, it said, to $723 million. 

In the nine months through September, the company lost $258 million, on a net basis, on revenue of $550 million. 

As part of the IPO, said Qualtrics, venture funds associated with Silver Lake Technology Management LLC have agreed to purchase $550 million worth of stock in the offering. 

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