NEW YORK—Warby Parker has submitted its paperwork to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for a public listing. The offering is expected to take place after the SEC completes its review process, the company said. Warby's brief statement said the company "has submitted a draft registration statement on Form S-1 with the Securities and Exchange Commission relating to the proposed public listing of its Class A common stock. The public listing is expected to take place after the SEC completes its review process, subject to market and other conditions."

The company provided no additional information. At VMAIL's presstime, financial news reports said it was unclear whether this would be an initial public offering (IPO) or a direct listing.

Warby Parker was founded in 2010. Since that time, the company has raised $535.5 million in nine rounds of funding. In August of 2020, the company announced a $245 million fundraising, with investment from D1 Capital Partners, Durable Capital Partners, T. Rowe Price, and Baillie Gifford. According to a source familiar with the company's financing at the time, the new investment valued the e-commerce/brick-and-mortar retailer at $3 billion.

Prior to August last year, the company previously raised a total of $290 million, including, as VMAIL reported in March 2018, a $75 million investment. According to TechCrunch, the additional $245 million announced then was a combination of a Series F round ($125 million led by Durable Capital Partners in the second quarter of 2020 and a Series G round of $120 million led by D1 Capital in Q3 ofn2020). The company would not comment further but its senior executives did say in March 2021 that they “have always viewed an IPO as a financing opportunity, though we don’t have any immediate plans to go public at this time.”

Warby Parker started as an online-only retailer. But gradually the company started selling in physical locations, first via a tour of school buses in various markets around the U.S., then via showrooms and physical stores. At the end of 2020, the company operated 123 locations in the U.S. and another three in Canada, and it has announced its intentions of continuing to expand via stores this year, expecting to open 30 to 35 additional locations.