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Sweetgreen says it is going public

The fast-casual salad chain made its long-rumored IPO plans official Monday, becoming the third restaurant chain to do so in the past two months.
Photo courtesy Sweetgreen

Sweetgreen on Monday made its long-rumored plans to file an initial public offering official, confidentially submitting a draft registration statement with federal regulators.

It marks the third such filing for a restaurant company in the last two months. In May, Krispy Kreme filed IPO documents to raise $100 million from public investors. And, just last week, drive-thru coffee chain Dutch Bros Coffee submitted its intent to go public.

Fast-casual salad chain Sweetgreen, a longtime darling of private investors, said in a statement it has not determined the price range and number of shares it plans to offer. Sweetgreen’s IPO is expected to begin after the Securities and Exchange Commission finishes its review process, the company said.

Sweetgreen declined to comment further on the initial public offering. Bloomberg reported about six weeks ago the Los Angeles-based chain was working with Goldman Sachs on an IPO.

The chain, which has more than 120 units, raised $156 million in January from Durable Capital Partners, which raised its valuation to $1.78 billion, according to Bloomberg. That’s up from its $1.6 billion valuation in 2019 following a $150 million investment. In 2018, it was valued at $1 billion.

Sweetgreen has struggled during the pandemic, though, as the downtown office workers it was created to feed retreated to their home offices for lunch. The chain laid off 20% of its corporate staff as traffic declined.  

Late last month, it rolled out a rebranding of its visual identity, with a new logo and design elements.

“At Sweetgreen, we create experiences that connect food and culture together and we want this brand identity to help reimagine what the fast food industry looks like in the years to come,” Nathaniel Ru, Sweetgreen co-founder and chief brand officer, said in a statement at the time.

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