Dropbox shares surged in a strong market debut on Friday after the cloud storage provider priced its much-anticipated initial public offering above expectations.
The opening-day jump took Dropbox beyond the $10 billion valuation it had when it raised $350 million in venture capital funding in 2014. The stock was up more than 40% at $29.60 on Friday, valuing the company at more than $12 billion.
The offering — the largest in the tech sector since Snapchat owner Snap last March — had been priced at $21 a share late on Thursday, above the projected range of $18 to $20 and was 25 times oversubscribed. With 36 million shares being sold, it raised $756 million for Dropbox.
“Dropbox’s much-awaited debut marks an end to a long dry spell in the U.S. IPO market for big names in the technology sector,” Reuters said, adding that the opening-day pop “may bode well for music streaming service Spotify,” which is due to start trading on April 3.
Dropbox, which was founded in 2007 as a free service to share and store photos, music and other large files, has more than 500 million users in more than 180 countries and reported around $1.1 billion in revenues in 2017, up from $845 million the previous year. Its full-year net loss nearly halved from the $210.2 million in 2016.
The company competes with much larger technology firms such as Google, Microsoft and Amazon.com.
“Dropbox is going public at the right time. It has an attractive story to justify its need for financing and the market dynamics are good,” said Josh Lerner, professor of Investment Banking at Harvard Business School.
After Snap’s disappointing IPO — it is currently trading roughly 4% below its $17 IPO price — analysts believe the Dropbox and Spotify offerings boost the tech IPO market this year.
“The strong performance of the Dropbox IPO may open the door for more technology unicorns to IPO throughout the rest of 2018,” Sohail Prasad, co-founder and co-CEO of Equidate, a platform for trading of shares in private technology firms, told Reuters.