SmileDirectClub IPO Hopes to Make Investors Grin

SmileDirectClub (NASDAQ:SDC) priced its IPO at $23.00 per share, topping the company’s initial projections, according to a person familiar with the offering.

The online dentistry company’s offering raises $1.3 billion and values the online dentistry company at $8.9 billion. SmileDirectClub sold 58.5 million shares, the same as it had originally projected.

The company reported $423.2 million in sales last year, a 190% increase from the $146 million it reported in 2017, according to its prospectus filed last month. It posted a net loss of $74.8 million last year, more than double the net loss of $32.78 in 2017.

Acquiring new customers is expensive. SmileDirectClub spent $289.3 million on marketing and general expenses last year.

The company originally projected it would price its shares at between $19.00 and $22.00 each, and plans to start trading Thursday on the NASDAQ Composite Index.

SmileDirectClub operates more than 300 locations, according to its initial prospectus filing. It has also signed partnerships with Walgreens and CVS to open "SmileShops" inside their drug stores.

Customers can visit a SmileShop to have someone scan their teeth and create a 3D image, which SmileDirectClub then uses to build a custom aligner. They can also order a kit online and send back an impression.

The Nashville, Tennessee-based company plans to use the proceeds from its IPO to fund international expansion and research and development, according to the filing. SmileDirectClub’s aligners are currently available in the U.S., Canada, Australia and the U.K.