Shopify shares soar in 1st trading after IPO

Shopify CEO Tobias Lutke, center wearing hat, is celebrated as he rings the New York Stock Exchange opening bell, marking the Canadian company's IPO, Thursday, May 21, 2015. AP Photo/Richard Drew

NEW YORK – Shares of Shopify climbed sharply Thursday after its initial public offering raised about $131 million, more than the company expected.

Shopify Inc. stock rose $8.78, or 51.7 per cent, to $25.78 in afternoon trading. Its offering of 7.7 million shares priced at $17 each. The offering valued Shopify at around $1.27 billion.

The Canadian company works with merchants who want to offer their own online checkout services, providing a platform for small- and mid-size businesses that sell products online. Clients can use Shopify’s software to handle sales made through mobile phones, the Web, physical stores and other means.

Shopify said it handled about $3.8 billion in transactions in 2014, and it reported $105 million in revenue.

The jump put Shopify on pace for one of the strongest first days among companies that went public in 2015. The biggest gainers have been cancer drug developer Aduro Biotech Inc. and Shake Shack Inc., both of which more than doubled on their first day of trading.

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The stock is trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “SHOP.”

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