Technology

The Astonishing Avalara

After filing for an IPO with a $19 to $21 range, Avalara ($AVLR) increased the range to $21 to $23 and then priced above-the-range last night at $24. It’s not surprising because the story behind this enterprise cloud software company is a great one. It’s “astonishing” because it comes in an area that’s typically a…

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Can Carbon Black Compete?

The information security market keeps growing as customers struggle to adapt to new threats and risks while maintaining a mass of existing technologies, solutions and practices. Companies have done fairly well protecting their networks but their ability to control the devices attaching to the network is limited. These “endpoints” must be made secure in order…

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IPO Bake Off – DocuSign versus Smartsheet

We have two business SaaS players coming public tonight. While their businesses are very different we thought it would be fun to compare them using our typical framework for evaluating new companies. If you don’t already know them DocuSign (DOCU) is an online system to allow documents to be signed by multiple parties to speed…

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Pivotal Software – A pretty platform for big, ugly applications.

Pivotal Software ($PVTL) went public on Friday at $15/share. The offering didn’t get a resounding vote from the markets. Unlike other recent enterprise software deals, this one ended quietly at $15.75. We think PVTL is likely to do well from these levels. Partly because investors focused on “slowing growth” in revenues. That misses the most…

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Zuora Strives for Sex in Billing Software

Enterprise subscription management software is pretty boring. But the world is shifting from purchase to subscription. Every company now wants “continuous customer relationships” and consumers love subscriptions. In many ways, the subscription economy isn’t new. Even cars were often leased versus bought but they were still treated as an asset. Companies like Zipcar took it…

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The Spotify

The Spotify Deal Call it what you will (IPO, DPO, simple listing) but Spotify (NYSE: SPOT) will begin trading in the public markets on April 3rd. The shares have a trading and price history that the company includes in their prospectus – they place a high emphasis on “transparency” in their corporate culture. Spotify is…

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Sizing up the Dropbox.

The Dropbox (DBX) IPO is well-trod ground at this point. The deal is expected to price on 3/22 and open for trading Friday, 3/23. The company raised the range to $18-20 so we are using the $19 mid-point in our analysis. To add to the general pomp and circumstance, Salesforce (CRM), stepped up to buy…

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Cloud Security with the Zscaler IPO

In case you haven’t noticed we’ve seen an acceleration of enterprise cloud adoption. Stocks like Nutanix (NTNX), Twilio (TWLO), MongoDB (MDB) and Okta (OKTA) have all taken off in the past few weeks on the back of improving fundamentals. The shift is captured in a quote overheard during an industry conversation – “large companies are…

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Can ADT Dance?

ADT Introduction ADT has been around for a long time – they were founded in 1874 and pioneered the current security monitoring business in 1920. They are the giant in the home and commercial security market with over 8 million customers and 18,000 employees in 200 locations. The company has a checkered history – they…

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SendGrid (SEND) a developer-focused email platform.

There’s a growing class of “developer-focused” software infrastructure platforms. It all started with Amazon AWS but since then many companies have taken a similar approach to other areas of software. Other examples included Twilio (TWLO), Stripe (Private), Atlassian (TEAM), MuleSoft (MULE), and GitHub (Private). What distinguishes this type of company? Here’s our list: They can…

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