OpenTable Files for $40 Million Public Offering


OpenTable, the online restaurant reservation service, has filed an S1 with the SEC to raise $40 million. The company, founded in 1998 by former Citysearch President Thomas Layton, was launched as easyseats.com. It currently has contracts with 10,000 restaurants in all 50 states, or approximately 1/3 of U.S. reservation restaurants. It seats roughly 2.8 million diners per month.

Among Open Table’s features are computerized reservation management, table management, guest recognition and email marketing for restaurants. In return, it charges installation fees, subscription fees and incremental fees per booked diner. It made $41.3 million for the nine months ending at the end of Sept, earning a small profit. This includes $22.16 million from subscriptions; $17.34 million from reservations and $1,81 million from installations and related services.

The 292 person company currently handles reservations in the U.S., Canada and Mexico , and also has launched operations in Germany, Japan and the U.K.. Its international operations outside of North America account for 900 restaurants.

While the company shows rapid growth in most segments, it has experienced setbacks last year in France and Spain, where it closed offices. Moreover, the depressed worldwide economy may have played a large role in a falloff in reservations, which declined in 4Q 2008 anywhere from 10 percent to 15 percent.