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Sweetgreen files for an IPO in a bet that the salad crowd is coming back to the office

The fast-casual salad chain has filed confidential paperwork for its long-rumored initial public offering.

Sweetgreen files for an IPO in a bet that the salad crowd is coming back to the office
[Photo: Luisa Brimble/Unsplash]
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Sweetgreen wants to get more of that sweet green.

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The fast-casual salad chain has filed confidential paperwork for an initial public offering, the company said on Monday, with plans to list its stock after a review by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The price range and number of shares on offer for the proposed IPO have not yet been determined, Sweetgreen said. The future listing would be “subject to market and other conditions.”

For Sweetgreen, which reduced its corporate workforce by 20% last year in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the move to go public signals its confidence that the pandemic’s worst days are over. Before COVID-19 struck, the company had been ramping up its arsenal of lunch-pickup spots, or “outposts,” catering in large part to a certain class of health-conscious, mobile-savvy office worker.

However, with experts predicting permanent shifts in remote work trends, and with businesses trying to strike a delicate balance between letting people work remotely and encouraging them to return to the office, the playbook for trendy lunch spots may need some adjusting—for now and the foreseeable future.

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More restaurant chains are exploring their options after a devastating 15 months, and going public could be on the menu for at least a few of them. Last month, Krispy Kreme doughnuts announced plans to list on the Nasdaq. We guess workers can’t live on salads alone.

About the author

Christopher Zara is a senior staff news editor for Fast Company and obsessed with media, technology, business, culture, and theater. Before coming to FastCo News, he was a deputy editor at International Business Times, a theater critic for Newsweek, and managing editor of Show Business magazine

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