Data analytics startup Domo, valued at $2B, files a last-ditch IPO to raise some cash

After burning through all its cash, data analytics startup Domo filed for an IPO in search of some extra dollars.

June 4, 2018

Domo, a data-analytics company based in Utah, filed an IPO last Friday — after its credit ran dry and it posted a net annual loss of $176.6m. 

The company, known for asking its 1k customers to swear to secrecy during 4-years of “stealth” to boost its valuation, hopes that a public listing will give it the cash it needs to avoid selling off its expensive furniture.

Domo kept its cards too close to its chest

For most CEOs, an IPO is an opportunity to pop a champagne cork — but for Domo CEO Josh James (who sold his startup Omniture to Adobe for $1.8B), it was a time to push the panic button. 

In spite of the $730m it received in funding, the company has racked up $803.3m in debt — and maxed out its credit card. 

Now James, known for spending Domo dollars on himself and his other companies ($600k at a BBQ restaurant he owns and $1.6m on his private plane over 2 years), is looking for “equity or debt financing” to avoid the need to “significantly reduce operating expenses.”

Another unicorn straps on its ski boots

To pay down Domo’s debts, James — who also founded a Utah tech consortium called “Silicon Slopes” — hopes to draft off the success of fellow Utahn unicorn Pluralsight, which recently boosted its value with a $1.56B IPO (yes, that is the real word for a person from Utah).

So James, who has 40x the voting power of other shareholders, better hope that investors are ready to send another unicorn down the slopes if he doesn’t want to double down on the spare rib business next year.

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