Short-term rental startup Sonder faces Nasdaq delisting

Notice comes after SPAC merger, two rounds of layoffs

Sonder CEO Francis Davidson (Getty, Sonder)
Sonder CEO Francis Davidson (Getty, Sonder)

Sonder’s turbulent year as a public company hit another bump with a delisting notice from Nasdaq after its share price dropped below $1 for 30 consecutive business days.

The short-term rental startup has until Oct. 18 to get back into Nasdaq’s good graces, Skift reported, meaning the stock needs to close at $1 or higher for 10 consecutive business days during the next six months. The company could also transfer to the Nasdaq Capital Market, which doesn’t have the same minimum price requirement.

The delisting notice is more fodder for critics of the once-thriving market for special purpose acquisition companies. The San Francisco-based startup went public last January via a SPAC merger with a blank-check firm sponsored by billionaires Alec Gores and Dean Metropoulos, debuting at $8.95 per share. The SPAC deal valued Sonder at $1.9 billion.

Sonder had a brief spike above $10 per share, but has been on the decline since last February, a mere month after the stock’s big premiere. The stock closed below $1 for the first time on March 2. While it briefly jumped over the threshold, it continues to plummet, closing at $0.44 on Tuesday.

Sonder lost nearly $55 million in the fourth quarter, one year after reporting a net loss of $77 million. 

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The company laid off 14 percent of its corporate team in March, its second round of layoffs in less than a year after laying off 21 percent of its corporate staff and 7 percent of its local workforce in June.

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Founded in 2014, the short-term rental firm sought to differentiate itself from the likes of Airbnb by leasing and managing rentals itself.

The company’s delisting notice comes after co-working giant WeWork received a notice of its own from the New York Stock Exchange. The clock is ticking on the beleaguered company,  

Holden Walter-Warner