Vlad Tenev, Robinhood’s chief executive and a co-founder, said in an interview that the I.P.O. was a “celebration of the individual investor in America.” He added, “We’re just mindful that this is an important moment for our customers as well.”
Robinhood’s lukewarm public debut raises questions for the Silicon Valley company after a rocky year.
Early in the pandemic, as the stock market crashed, Robinhood suffered outages at crucial moments. As the year went on and the app became more popular, commentators raised questions about the level of risk that traders were taking, especially with highly leveraged options trades.
Other aspects of Robinhood’s app, including confetti explosions and lottery scratch-offs, have drawn comparisons to gambling. One young customer, Alex Kearns, killed himself last year after a misunderstanding over debt in his account. Robinhood has since settled with his family.
In January, stock traders banded together on social media to drive up the share price of meme stocks including GameStop, the gaming retailer, and AMC Entertainment, the movie theater chain.
Robinhood had to halt some trades and raise rounds of emergency funding to cover the collateral needed for its customers’ trades. Mr. Tenev’s cellphone was seized by the authorities as part of an investigation into the situation. Robinhood was sued more than 50 times, and Mr. Tenev was summoned to testify in Congress.
Article source: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/07/29/technology/robinhood-stock.html