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Okta hits the public markets

Okta began trading on the Nasdaq this morning, after raising $187 million in its IPO. The San Francisco-based company priced at the top of its offering range, giving it a fully-diluted market value of nearly $2.4 billion. Shares were already up more than 30% at mid-day.

What it does: Okta is focused on identity management for companies, with cloud-based software that lets employees securely connect with applications and devices. The business model is traditional SaaS ― get subscribers and then try to reap those recurring revenues by limiting churn.

Why now? Co-founder and CEO Todd McKinnon tells Axios that the company has "been ready for a while to go public, in terms of growth and scale, but we waited a bit longer because last year people were looking at companies with high growth but high cash burn differently than they are today."

Finances: Okta's revenue has nearly doubled over each of the past two years, most recently from $86 million in 2015 to $160 million in 2016. Net losses have also grown, albeit at a lower rate (most recently $76.3 million to $86.5 million).

Investment history: Okta had raised around $230 million in VC funding from firms like Sequoia Capital (21.2% pre-IPO stake), Andreessen Horowitz (19.6%), Greylock (16.9%), Khosla Ventures (8.1%) and Floodgate. Its most recent private valuation was around $1.2 billion. McKinnon says the company was fortunate to not have complicated structure on any of its venture rounds. "It gave us some flexibility on pricing that other companies don't have."

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