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Snowflake is about to go public. It's the biggest software IPO ever

September 16, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Cloud data warehouse company Snowflake is promoted at the Nasdaq MarketSite, Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2020, in New York's Times Square. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

Snowflake, a cloud data warehousing firm that has the backing of Salesforce and Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway, is set to go public in what stands to be the biggest software IPO ever.

Snowflake, a cloud data warehousing firm that has the backing of Salesforce (CRM) and Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRKB), is set to go public in what stands to be the biggest software IPO ever.

Snowflake priced its initial public offering Tuesday night at $120 a share -- well above the expected range of $100 to $110.

The company is selling 28 million shares and will raise nearly $3. 4 billion from the IPO.

At its $120 share price, Snowflake will be valued at $33. 3 billion.

worth more than established companies in the S&P 500 like Bank of New York Mellon (BK), Hershey (HSY) and Allstate (ALL) as well as Dow components Walgreens (WBA) and Travelers (TRV).

Snowflake is one of several buzzy "unicorn" startups expected to go public before the end of 2020, a list that also includes Airbnb, Palantir and DoorDash.

Snowflake helps blue chip companies analyze and share data in the cloud.

The company said in its most recent regulatory filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it now has more than 3,100 customers -- double the total from a year ago.

Snowflake CEO Frank Slootman and other company executives are among the top individual investors in the company.

Snowflake disclosed last week that Salesforce, the cloud giant that was recently added to the Dow, and Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway would each buy $250 million in Snowflake stock in a private placement following the IPO.

The partnership with Snowflake could help Salesforce compete even more effectively against the likes of Amazon (AMZN), Microsoft (MSFT) and Google owner Alphabet (GOOGL).

Snowflake competes with Amazon's AWS, Microsoft's Azure and the Google Cloud platforms.

Berkshire tends to invest more in mature companies like Apple (AAPL), which is now the Oracle of Omaha's top holding.

Snowflake is not a typical Berkshire bet, because it is not yet profitable -- even though sales are rapidly growing.

But the company posted a net loss of $171 million -- slightly less than the loss it posted in the same period a year ago.

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