After Snap, will one of these 12 tech companies be the next to IPO?


10 Feb 2017292 Shares

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The New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street will be the site of Snap’s IPO – but who will follow? Image: Elnur/Shutterstock

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Now that Snap has popped its IPO cherry, which of these promising companies will be next to crackle?

After many months of speculation around a Snapchat IPO, Snap Inc made it official on Monday (2 February) with its S-1 filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Snap filed for an IPO listing on the New York Stock Exchange, at a valuation north of $25bn, in early March. Now that one rumour mill can be decommissioned, the others can be pushed into overdrive as analysts speculate which company will be next to go public.

CB Insights, for example, has no less than 369 highly valued and high-momentum private companies on watch in its IPO Pipeline Report 2017.

We took a look at their top five IPO prospects – Pluralsight, Okta, Blue Apron, Zuora and Qualtrics – along with seven other notable unicorns to measure up their likelihood. While some have downplayed the prospect or hit roadblocks that may push the process out beyond 2017, many remain likely contenders to the be next in line at the SEC.

Inspirefest 2017

Pluralsight

One of CB Insights’ top five most-likely-to-IPO, Pluralsight is an edtech training tool for developers and IT professionals. Founded by Keith Sparkjoy, Fritz Onion and CEO Aaron Skonnard in 2004, the Utah-headquartered company has received $238.7m in total funding. The most recent round raked in $30m in growth funding and reportedly brought Pluralsight’s valuation above $1bn.

Okta

Okta is a platform that offers a secure connection between companies and technology using identity information to grant people access. It was founded in 2009 by Todd McKinnon and Frederic Kerrest.

Headquartered in San Francisco, Okta also has offices in Seattle, Toronto, Amsterdam, Sydney and London. The company has raised $229.3m across six funding rounds since its foundation and, with increased interest and coverage on cybersecurity, Okta could be next on the IPO list.

Blue Apron

Founded in 2012 by Ilia Papas, Matt Salzberg and Matthew Wadiak, Blue Apron is the growing food delivery subscription service offering weekly curated meal ingredients.

In just five years, the company has raised nearly $200m, much of which came as part of a $135m Series D investment led by Fidelity Investments in June 2015.

Having recently opened a new fulfilment centre with 2,000 jobs, an IPO is evidently part of Blue Apron’s roadmap. However, the company has reportedly delayed preparations until later this year.

Qualtrics

Founded by Jared Smith, Ryan Smith and Stuart Orgill in 2002, Qualtrics is a research software company based in Utah. The company serves more than 8,000 customers across 90 countries and its EMEA headquarters is in Dublin.

In just two rounds of funding, Qualtrics has raised $220m, with more than two-thirds of that coming from its second round in 2014.

Zuora

With $242m raised since its founding in 2007, California-based Zuora offers subscription billing solutions to clients. Founded by Cheng Zou, K V Rao and Tien Tzuo, the fintech-cum-SaaS company’s early investors include Salesforce founder Marc Benioff, Benchmark Capital and Lehman Brothers. Amid the growing rumblings of a potential 2017 IPO, Zuora was recently named in the first ever Forbes Cloud 100 in 2016.

Stripe

Founded in 2010 by Irish brothers Patrick and John Collison, Stripe is now the fintech darling of Silicon Valley, valued at an estimated $9.2bn following an investment of $125m in November 2016.

Despite plans to be a 1,000-person company within the next five years, the payments company’s CFO Will Gaybrick has been coy about any IPO, saying Stripe is “very happy as a private company right now”.

Uber

While Uber’s headlines have revolved around politics lately, speculation has been mounting around the ride-sharing company and a potential IPO. One of the world’s most famous unicorns, San Francisco-headquartered Uber was founded in 2009 by Garrett Camp, Oscar Salazar and CEO Travis Kalanick. Funding levels for the company – which opened a centre of excellence in Limerick in 2016 – recently hit the $12.46bn mark, with a reported valuation of $62.5bn.

Airbnb

Global accommodation website Airbnb has skyrocketed since it was founded in 2008. With rapid growth, funding and interest, this company is a strong contender for an IPO.

Based in San Francisco, the company was founded by Nathan Blecharczyk, Joe Gebbia and Brian Chesky and has raised a phenomenal $3.95bn in total funding.

Airbnb unveiled its new international headquarters in Dublin last year and, in November 2016, Dublin was also announced as the test bed for a new Airbnb management service, Airsorted.

Glassdoor

Founded in 2007 by Robert Hohman, Rich Barton and Tim Besse, jobs and recruitment site Glassdoor certainly has global reach. Headquartered in Mill Valley, California, the company offers employee-driven glimpses at companies and salaries, as well as recruiting and employer branding opportunities.

Glassdoor is valued at $1bn, with total funding of $201.5m to date. A recent funding round drew in $40m and an Irish base opened in Dublin in early 2016.

Cloudflare

Matthew Prince, Lee Holloway, and Michelle Zatlyn founded Cloudflare in 2009 as a performance and security provider that includes partners such as Google, as well as the infamous LulzSec website.

Surpassing a $1bn valuation in 2013, Cloudflare has raised a total of $182m, led by its single biggest Series D investment of $110m in September 2015. At that time, Prince revealed the company’s intentions to IPO in 2017, though a later markdown on its valuation from Fidelity Investments may well have elongated the process.

Slack

Slack provides a chatroom for collaborators. The company has an estimated 700 employees around the world and is headquartered in Vancouver, while its EMEA HQ is in Dublin.

Founder and CEO Stewart Butterfield’s form in the start-up space is already apparent, with his name made as co-founder of image-sharing company Flickr. Rumours of a 2017 IPO were dismissed by Butterfield prior to CB Insights’ pipeline report, though he did admit we are in “interesting times” as the company has, to date, raised $540m.

InsideSales.com

Founded by Dave Elkington, InsideSales.com brings a different form of data analytics to the sales process. Using its own algorithms, this platform determines what time of day is best to contact people across multiple locations, taking in considerations such as weather, politics and local news to help determine the receiver’s mood.

With a HQ in Utah, the company recently expanded into Ireland amid business growth. Continuously tipped as a unicorn, rumours of an IPO have grown in the past 12 months.

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