Buffett-backed cloud unicorn Snowflake nets $3.4 billion in record-breaking software IPO

Traders and clerks frantically signal trades in eurodollar futures at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange after the Federal Reserve announced a hike in interest rates, June 30, 1999.

  • Billionaire investor-backed Snowflake said it would raise $3.4 billion in the largest-ever software IPO, giving it a value of over $33 billion.
  • The cloud-data platform will sell 28 million shares priced at $120 a piece.
  • Snowflake plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “SNOW” from September 16.
  • Its highly-anticipated IPO has managed to capture the attention of billionaire investor Warren Buffett, who agreed to invest over $550 million in the company after going public.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Cloud startup Snowflake raised a record-breaking $3.4 billion on Wednesday, in the largest ever initial-public-offering for a software company on Wednesday, kicking off a big week for technology firms going public this week.

The cloud-data warehousing startup announced that it is selling 28 million shares valued at $120 each, which means it would raise nearly $3.4 billion in proceeds.

Snowflake, which was valued at $12.4 billion around the time of its most recent fundraising round in February and counts billionaire investor Warren Buffett among its backers, plans to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “SNOW” from September 16. 

The San Mateo-based company’s highly-anticipated IPO has managed to generate surprise enthusiasm from Buffett, who famously steers clear of tech stocks . 

Business Insider previously reported that Buffett had agreed to invest upwards of $550 million in the cloud-data company once it goes public. 

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Snowflake is the largest software IPO on record, according to Renaissance Capital, and the largest since Uber’s $8.1 billion flotation in May 2019.

It has emerged as one of the strongest players in cloud-data warehousing, particularly this year, as the pandemic forced millions of people to work remotely, fueling an already growing trend among businesses to set up networks on web-based platforms.

The company was reportedly aiming for a valuation of as high as $20 billion. In total, Snowflake has raised $1.4 billion from investors including Sequoia and ICONIQ Capital.

Snowflake has about 3,100 customers, including 56 clients that contributed about $1 million in a 12-month period.

Prior to the company going public, Ray Wang, an analyst from Constellation Research, said: “It’s going to be the blockbuster enterprise listing for 2020.”

Other tech IPOs set to debut this week include video-game software firm Unity, which is set to raise $950 million, and data-software platform Sumo Logic, expected to raise $281 million.

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