LifeLock plans life as public company

Contact: Brenon Daly

Despite consumer technology names falling largely out of favor on Wall Street, LifeLock has announced plans for a $175m IPO. The identity theft prevention vendor, which has 2.3 million customers, ran at basically breakeven on sales of $125m in the first half of 2012. The offering is being led by Goldman Sachs & Co, which owns 11% of LifeLock, along with Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank Securities.

LifeLock’s filing comes as other consumer-focused technology IPOs have had a rough go of it. That’s true across a number of markets, from social networking (Facebook) to gaming (Zynga) to online backup (Carbonite has been nearly cut in half during its first year on the public market) to information security (AVAST Software pulled its IPO paperwork last month). Fairly or not, LifeLock – a company that spends about half its revenue on sales and marketing – will have to work its way through that bearish sentiment in the market.

Still, the company has been steadily increasing its subscriber base (at about a 20% rate) as well as bumping up its average revenue per subscriber (currently $9 per month). That has helped LifeLock get to a point where it generated $21m of free cash flow in the first half of 2012, which is only slightly less than it generated in all of last year. Also, we recently noted that LifeLock used some of that cash to take its first step into the enterprise market, acquiring ID Analytics. Although that business is still less than 10% of total revenue, it’s a welcome hedge for LifeLock, both in terms of technology and end markets.

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