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By Niket Nishant
(Reuters) - Shares of Global-e Online Ltd rose as much as 1% in their Nasdaq debut on Wednesday, giving the cross-border e-commerce platform a market capitalization of nearly $3.6 billion.
The Israel-based company's stock opened at $24.25, down from the initial public offering (IPO) price of $25 per share, but later recovered to trade higher.
Launched in 2013, Global-e provides a platform to hundreds of brands and retailers across Europe, the United States and Asia. Its customers include Anastasia Beverly Hills, Marc Jacobs and Pepe Jeans.
The company was co-founded by Amir Schlachet, who served for 11 years in the Israeli Defense Forces, and counts DHL, Apax Partners, Red Dot Capital Partners and Vitruvian Partners among its investors.
The boom in online shopping during the pandemic has lifted the appeal of e-commerce startups, which have ridden investor optimism to rich valuations. "The vast majority of the acceleration in growth that the pandemic brought on is structural and is here to stay," Schlachet said in an interview.
Special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs), which are shell companies that merge with a private firm to take it public, have also helped fuel the record run in U.S. capital markets.
But Schlachet said Global-e realized early that the traditional "king's route" would be the right thing for the company, referring to the IPO path.
Global-e will initially focus on expanding in its existing markets and will also look for acquisition opportunities in the future, which was partly the reason for the IPO, Schlachet said.
The company raised $375 million in its IPO by selling 15 million shares at the top end of the $23 to $25 target range.
Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Jefferies were the lead underwriters for the offering.
(Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain and Niket Nishant in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni)