Real estate brokerage firm Compass Inc published its filing for an initial public offering and revealed a 56% surge in revenue helped by a strong housing market on Monday. Compass, which runs an integrated software platform that serves real estate agents in the residential real estate market, has been lifted by the COVID-19 pandemic as more people prefer to buy and sell homes online. The New York-based startup said its revenue rose to $3.72 billion in 2020 from $2.39 billion a year earlier, while net loss narrowed to $270.2 million from $388 million a year ago. (https://bit.ly/3r9aY7F) The strong growth came in contrast to a dim outlook the company had when the coronavirus first hit the United States a year ago. It laid off 15% of its employees and predicted a 50% decline in revenue. Compass was founded in 2012 by Ori Allon, a former director of engineering at Twitter Inc, and Robert Reffkin, who worked at Goldman Sachs earlier. The firm covers 46 metropolitan statistical areas in the United States and works with over 19,000 agents. It generates revenue from commissions paid for transactions on the platform. The company has raised $1.5 billion from investors including Soft Bank Group Corp, Goldman Sachs and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. It was valued at $6.4 billion after its $370 million funding round in 2019. Other public-listed brokerages including Redfin Corp and Zillow Group Inc, have seen their shares rebounding strongly from last March's lows. Compass had confidentially filed to go public in January. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Barclays are the underwriters for its offering. (This story corrects name of founders in para 5) REUTERS
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