Finance | May 2, 2021 5:13 pm

Will a High-Profile IPO Change Soho House Forever?

The planned IPO follows an earlier foray in 2018

Soho House Berlin
An aerial view of the Soho House Berlin.
Christian Ender/Getty Images

In early April, financial market observers noted an interesting piece of information: Soho House began proceedings to go public. An April 9 article at The Real Deal noted that “[t]he exclusive members-only club this week submitted a confidential filing for an initial public offering with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.” This combination of elements sparked a bit of cognitive dissonance: how would one square an exclusive, members-only institution with something as literally public as an IPO?

In a new article for Air Mail, Nimrod Kamer addressed the planned IPO as part of a larger series of changes affecting the clubs. Or, as Kamer phrases it, “There’s absolutely no more cool factor left.”

The statistics Kamer cites point to the success to date of Soho House: 110,000 members (at least before the pandemic), 27 locations and 4 more clubs set to open later this year. But Kamer also argues that with that growth has come a winnowing away of the exclusivity that was once crucial to the clubs’ appeal. Elsewhere in the article, Kamer argues that potential members might be better served investing the money they might have spent on a membership in Soho House stock instead.

Now, this isn’t the first time Soho House has been rumored to be going public; they also floated plans to do so in 2018. Will this attempt click in a way the previous one did not? And what will Soho House feel like once the pandemic has abated? Members and investors alike wait with bated breath.