Explore the possibility of owning Valve stock and if there will ever be a Valve IPO.
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Valve Stock and IPO Recent News
What is Valve?
Valve Corporation is a private video game development, hardware designer, and digital game distribution company.
The Steam platform was launched in 2003 and is known as the “iTunes of PC gaming”, having a “stranglehold” on the PC gaming industry. Outsiders view Steam as Valve’s cash cow.
The company was founded in 1996 by former Microsoft employees Gabe Newell and Mike Harrington. Newell was employee number 27 at Microsoft. Harrington left Valve in 2000 and presumably devested his shares.
Valve’s first video game release was a first-person shooter game called Half-Life (released in 1998). Other popular game series include Portal, Counter-Strike, and Dota.
The company also produces gaming hardware, including controllers and a virtual reality headset called Valve Index.
In 2022, Valve launched Steam Deck, a handheld PC gaming device to compete with the Nintendo Switch. The product has a docking station add-on enabling users to connect it to a monitor or PC. A report estimates Steam Deck sales will surpass three million units sold in 2023.
Valve is an immensely private company. Ownership details, financials, and valuation are all difficult to verify. This article aims to assemble as much public data as is available. We’ll update this information as the company evolves.
Is Valve Publicly Traded?
No. Valve is a private company.
Who Owns Valve?
Valve is a private company with a secretive ownership structure. Its investors include cofounder Gabe Newell and Valve executives and employees. Cofounder Mike Harrington left the company in 2000, and analysts presume he is no longer an equity owner.
There is little evidence to suggest Valve has taken on venture capital investments.
We suspect Valve is a profit-sharing company, and excess profits go into research, hiring new employees, and shareholder distributions.
Valve likely offers internal liquidity to early employees and exiting employees by selling shares back to the existing ownership pool. This would keep the equity within the company and provides liquidity to those who wish to cash out some or all shares. SpaceX has an internal liquidity model to allow long-term employees to cash out when no IPO is on the horizon.
Forbes estimates Newell owns “at least a quarter” of Valve. Bloomberg “assumes” his ownership is at least 50.1% to retain control of the company.
Various sources indicate that Newell believes private ownership better serves his customers. He believes that public shareholders would meddle with creative decisions that could affect the customer experience.
In May 2022, Bloomberg and an analyst from Wedbush estimated the Valve valuation at $7.7 billion.
There is no definitive Valve valuation because the company has not pursued venture capital funding.
When is the Valve IPO Date?
The potential for an IPO is close to zero. There is no Valve IPO date.
Will Valve IPO?
At this stage, Valve will remain a private company for the foreseeable future.
The Founder and primary owner, Gabe Newell, has stated the importance of private ownership to avoid conflicts of interest with potential shareholders.
Newell was born in 1963. Gamers expect the company to remain in Newell’s command until he is incapable.
It is also widely assumed a contingency and estate plan is already in place that carries the same business philosophy of remaining private in the interest of its customers.
Customers have stated on various online chatrooms that Valve becoming a publicly held entity would be the beginning of the end of its PC gaming reign.
What is the Valve Stock Symbol? Valve Ticker?
Valve is a private company, so there is no Valve stock symbol.
Here are two Valve ticker suggestions that appear to be available in the U.S. if the company were ever to become public:
What is the Valve Stock Price?
There is no Valve stock price. The company is private and secretive about its internal share price and valuation.
Employer equity transactions are not public.
Can You Buy Valve on Pre-IPO Marketplaces?
Valve is among the most private pre-IPO companies in the United States.
The author has not seen evidence of Valve stock availability on prominent pre-IPO investing platforms based in the U.S.
Furthermore, no evidence indicates Valve has accepted investments from outside venture capital firms.
Valve is likely profitable and self-funds its growth investments.
Check out our list of the top pre-IPO investing platforms for share availability of other pre-IPO companies.
How to Own Valve Stock
Become a Valve employee.
Employment likely does not guarantee ownership. But employment appears to be the only viable path to becoming a Valve equity owner.
If the Valve stock ownership situation changes, we’ll update this post with factual information.
Investors get excited when they identify monopolistic online platforms riding extraordinary macroeconomic trends (gaming, augmented reality).
However, acquiring stock early on can often prove difficult for retail investors, even when shares are available.
Valve has one of the most secretive and illiquid equity structures we’ve seen, making it unlikely retail investors will ever own a piece of the company.
If you’re interested in owning Valve stock, find another company.
* Disclosure: The web page contains affiliate links from our partners. If a reader opens an account or buys a service from a link in this article, we may be compensated at no additional cost to the reader. Opening an account with a broker that provides access to IPOs does not guarantee the customer allocations of specific IPOs. The author is long the Fundrise Innovation Fund and the ARK Venture Fund.