Box Raises an Additional $150 Million Before IPO
Box, the cloud content management service, has raised an additional $150 million in funding, courtesy of private-equity firm TPG and hedge fund Coatue Management, the company announced yesterday. The new round of financing values the company at $2.4 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal, up from its previous valuation of $2 billion back in December. (Its competitor, Dropbox, has a valuation of $10 billion.)
Raising additional money after filing to go public is an unusual move, but the $150 million buys Box some extra time as it continues to hold out for a more favorable market. Initially, the company publicly filed in March but put the brakes on IPOing after technology stock prices faltered this spring.
According to the Journal, the company is planning to go public this year, but not until after Labor Day.
Box's growth rate in recent years has been explosive. In the company's most recent fiscal year, its revenue more than doubled from the same time a year earlier -- rising 111 percent year-over-year to $124.2 million by the end of Jan. 2014. But as its revenue has grown, so has its net losses which widened from $112.6 million to $168.6 million over the same time period. The company blames high customer acquisition costs.
Yesterday, Box released an updated regulatory filing that revealed its financial performance for the first quarter of its fiscal year. Revenue, unsurprisingly, was up: The company brought in $45.3 million in that three month period, up 93.6 percent from the first quarter last year. The company's net losses, also unsurprisingly, was up as well: Box racked $38.5 million in total loss, up 13 percent from the same time last year.
While Box is still burning through money at a rapid rate, spending nearly twice as much as its making in revenue, its net loss margin has shrank from its last quarter.
With this latest round of financing, Box has raised more than $500 million. Private-equity firm TPG joins a long list of investors, including venture-capital firms such as Draper Fisher Jurvetson and the software company Salesforce.com.
“TPG has a long history in investing in cutting-edge technology companies and Box is no exception,” said TPG executive Bryan Taylor in a statement. (The company also has investments in hot startups Uber and Airbnb.) “Box has established a strong leadership position in the transition to the cloud, and we are confident that the Company can continue to scale.”