July 8, 1999 7:25 PM PDT

PlanetRx files for $69 million IPO

Online pharmacy PlanetRx today filed to raise $69 million in an initial public offering, joining competitor Drugstore.com in the Internet gold rush.

South San Francisco-based PlanetRx did not set a share price or say how many shares it plans to sell. Goldman Sachs will manage the offering in conjunction with BancBoston Robertson Stephens, Hambrecht & Quist, and William Blair, according to the filing.

PlanetRx lost $20.1 million on $817,000 in revenue through the first six months of this year. Since the company's inception in March 1995, it has lost $24.4 million on $817,000 in revenue.

The announcement comes two months after rival Drugstore.com outlined a similar offering and less than four months after PlanetRx launched its Web site. Unlike Drugstore and Soma.com, which in recent months have teamed up with offline drugstore chains Rite Aid and CVS, respectively, PlanetRx does not yet have a similar offline partner.

In the filing, PlanetRx reported that it owned 29 health-related domain names, including Aids.com, Infertility.com and Physicians.com. In June, the company announced that a unit of pharmaceutical giant Warner-Lambert was backing the company's Diabetes.com Web site. PlanetRx also stated that it plans to launch six more satellite sites this year to provide information on chronic conditions.

Representatives of Benchmark Capital and Sequoia Capital each own about 15.6 percent of PlanetRx. Chief executive Bill Razzouk owns 5.3 percent of the company.

PlanetRx stated that it has 154 employees as of June 30. That's up from three employees on June 30, 1998. It plans to trade its shares on the Nasdaq national market under the symbol PLRX.

Separately, Drugstore.com released its second quarter earnings. In an updated filing to the SEC, Drugstore.com stated that it lost some $18.8 million on $3.6 million in revenue in the second quarter of this year. Since the company was founded in April 1998, it has some $36.5 million on $4.2 million in revenue.

Backed by venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and partially owned by Amazon.com, Drugstore.com filed for its IPO in May, just three months after launching its Web site.


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