All eyes are on Box as the world waits for the file sync and share startup to reveal its financials in preparation for its pre-IPO road show.
Today, at SXSW, Box CEO Aaron Levie revealed that Ashton Kutcher (yes, the Ashton Kutcher) and Guy Oseary (Madonna’s manager) have invested in his company. The investment happened in December, but why announce it then when you can do it just before IPO-time?
On Friday Bloomberg reported that the company plans to make its prospectus public in the next few weeks.
This comes as a surprise to no one. In January we reported that Box had exercised the JOBS Act and filed for a secret IPO. That news was initially “broken” by Quartz, repeated by The New York Times (make note, the Times called Box a storage startup ) and The Wall Street Journal, and all but verified by Forbes.
And though a sleuth journalist might have wrestled the “secret” out of one of the firms involved in early filing, the “leak” could have just as easily been intentionally orchestrated by Box and/or one of its savvy investors from Andreessen Horowitz, Bessemer Venture Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Emergence Capital Partners, General Atlantic, Intel Capital, Meritech Capital Partners, NEA, SAP Ventures, Scale Venture Partners and US Venture Partners.
We named them all because there are so many. Who knows what number of them is giving Box’s 28-year-old CEO, Aaron Levie advice? There’s so much to ponder.
It’s also interesting to note that Ben Horowitz, co-founder and partner at Andreessen Horowitz is one of the speakers on the agenda at boxDEV, Box’s developer conference being held in San Francisco later this month. There are other investors in the lineup as well, notably, Mamoon Hamid, general partner, The Social+Capital Partnership; Christine Herron, director, Intel Capital; Jerry Chen, partner, Greylock Partners; and Joe Lonsdale, partner, Formation 8 Partners.
You can’t help but wonder what all of these investors are doing speaking at a conference, geared not for the business or investor community, but for developers.
Developers’ conferences are typically for geeks.
Take, for example, DBX, Dropbox’s developer conference held last year. The presenters there worked for Dropbox: they spoke on subjects such as Dropbox’s platform and datastores, the future of programming, building for business on the Dropbox platform, designing products for people, etc.
So we can’t help but wonder, what’s up with the long list of VCs at boxDEV?
Some of them may want to be on stage at a Box-related event to pitch the company, not to the developers, per se, but to a larger audience who will see or hear about the conference from the press.
Or maybe Levie wants to use boxDEV as a vehicle to make Box’s market value appear to be even bigger (current estimates suggest $1-2 billion) than it is at present. It’s something that investors would be able to do without any coaching from Box.