Happy Friday, Term Sheet readers. Lucinda again filling in for Polina. Feel free to ping me at Lucinda.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Now onto the news.
Zuora popped 43% to $20 in its first day of trading Thursday, giving the company, which helps subscription-based firms manage billing and pricing, a valuation of around $2 billion.
For the firm’s early investors, it’s confirmation that investors also believe that the subscription economy has space to grow.
“The subscription economy is in its early innings,” Shasta Ventures Managing Director Jason Pressman told Term Sheet (Shasta owns an 8.3% stake in the company, now worth about $153.7 million post-offering). “You’ve certainly seen tech companies have a mass migration to subscriptions. But with a lot of industries its still nascent. I think recurring use physical farm, construction equipment, cars, and trucks are very much a place where you see a subscription economy making more and more sense.”
Notably, Zuora names construction equipment maker CAT and car maker Ford among its clients.
That’s not to say you’ll be sleeping on subscription-service bedsheets after programming your $3-a-month alarm clock any time soon.
“We don’t think the whole world will shift to subscription,” Pressman added. “For example, we don’t think any one is going to subscribe to cement.”
Though in the short term, an initial public offering could help Zuora bring in some subscription-curious companies.
“We are relatively small, and having this public platform will raise our visibility,” Zuora CEO Tien Tzuo told Term Sheet. “I think this raise is less about capital, and more about the strength of our company. Part of it was to establish that we are a mature, stronger company—which I think will make customers more comfortable.”
It’s the argument for a public offering, after a dry spell of tech IPOs in recent years.
Perhaps Zuora’s successful debut may add to the “pros” column for tech firms weighing an IPO. Its performance comes following a string of strong tech IPOs this year, including that of Zscaler and Dropbox. Now firms such as Eventbrite and Upwork are reportedly preparing for their own offering, the Wall Street Journal reports.
THE LATEST FROM FORTUNE…
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• Behind Tesla’s War of Words With the Federal Agency Investigating a Fatal Model X Crash (by Kirsten Korosec)
• How Lyft, Mastercard, and Drone Companies Are Experimenting With Artificial Intelligence (by Jonathan Vanian)
• What’s Behind Bitcoin’s Recent Price Jump? It May Be Tax Day (by David Meyer)
U.S. investors jump into Ant Financial. State pensions face funding gap. Comey compares Trump to mafia boss in memoir. Privacy Shield faces questions regarding Facebook. Backpage pleads guilty to facilitating prostitution. Chinese VC’s gain. FBI declines to say if it bought GrayKey. Yale says it slays.
• Checkr, a San Francisco-based background check firm, raised $100 million in Series C funding. T. Rowe Price Associates led the round and was joined by investors including Accel and Y Combinator.
• Onapsis, a Boston-based cybersecurity and compliance firm, raised $31 million Series C minority funding. LLR Partners led the round and was joined by investors including 406 Ventures, Evolution Equity Partners, and Arsenal Venture Partners.
• Zaius, a Boston-based CRM for marketers, raised $30 million in a Series B funding. Insight Venture Partners led the round and was joined by investors including Matrix Partners, Underscore VC, and Leaders Fund.
• Honest Buildings, a New York-based project management platform for commercial real estate owners, raised $25 million in Series B funding from investors including QuadReal and Altus Group.
• Punchh, a Mountain View, Calif.-based restaurant platform, raised $20 million in Series B funding. Sapphire Ventures led the round and was joined by investors including Cervin Ventures.
• Mapillary, a Malmo, Sweden-based street-level imagery platform that extracts map data using computer vision, raised $15 million in Series B funding. Samsung Catalyst Fund participated in the round.
• Kadena raised $12 million in its Series B funding. Devonshire Investors, SV Angel, Multicoin Capital, Susquehanna International Group (SIG), and Asimov Ventures were the investors.
• empow, a Cambridge, Mass.-based security firm, raised $10 million in funding. Ascent Venture Partners led the round.
• East Meet East, a New York-based dating app for Asians, raised $4 million in Series A funding. 500 Startups led the round, and was joined by investors including Asahi Medialab Ventures, DG Lab Fund (of Digital Garage and Daiwa Securities Group), Mobile Internet Capital, and Septeni Holdings. Read more.
• Local Crate, a Saint Paul, Minn.-based meal kit delivery firm, raised $1.4 million in seed funding. The Syndicate Fund, Matchstick Ventures, M25 Group, and Router Ventures led the round.
• Agreement Express, a Vancouver-based wealth management, payments, and insurance provider platform, raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Frontier Capital.
HEALTH AND LIFE SCIENCES DEALS
• Enterprise Therapeutics, a Brighton, U.K.-based biopharma company developing respiratory disease treatments, raised 29 million pounds ($41 million) in a Series B funding. Versant Ventures and Novartis Venture Fund led the round.
PRIVATE EQUITY DEALS
• IFM Investors’ Global Infrastructure Fund acquired OHL Concesiones, a Madrid-based transportation company, for $2.6 billion.
• HCL Technology and Sumeru Equity Partners agreed to acquire Actian Corp, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based data management platform, for $330 million.
• PeakEquity Partners invested over $40 million in Xeeva, a Madison Heights, Mich.-based sourcing software firm.
• Smarte Carte, a portfolio company of 3i Group, acquired Aviation Mobility, a Charlotte, N.C.-based provider of wheelchairs for the commercial aviation sector. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• ICP Construction, a portfolio company of Audax Private Equity, acquired Pli-Dek Systems, a Murrieta, Calif.-based maker of speciality coatings for the building industry. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• JR Automation, a portfolio company of Crestview Partners, acquired Setpoint Systems, a Littleton, Colo., provider of automation solutions, and Setpoint, an Ogden, Utah amusement and theme parks ride designer. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Stoic Holdings, a Denver-based lower-middle market private equity firm, acquired Arctic Industries, a Miami-based walk-in cooler manufacturer. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Investcorp acquired KSI Trading Corp, a New Jersey-based aftermarket auto body parts supplier. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Alpine Investors invested in Comniscient Technologies, a Boston-based telecom data analytics software provider. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Accel-KKR acquired Salsa Labs, a Bethesda, Md.-based software provider for nonprofits. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Credly, a New York-based digital credentials firm, acquired Pearson’s Acclaim badging business. Pearson will take a minority equity stake in Credly. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• GP Global acquired a majority stake in MAG Lube, a Dubai-based lubricants maker. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Vietnam Technological and Commercial Joint Stock Bank launched the country’s largest IPO, and plans to raise $922 million. Read more.
• Ceridian HCM Holding, a Minneapolis-based maker of human resources software, said it plans to raise $420 million in an IPO of 21 million shares priced between $19 to $21. The firm posted a loss of $9.3 million on revenue of $750.7 million in 2017. Thomas H. Lee Partners and Cannae Holdings back the company. Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan are joint bookrunners in the deal. The company plans to list on the NYSE and Toronto Stock Exchange under undisclosed symbols. Read more.
• The Works, a U.K.-based discount stationary chain backed by Endless, is planning an IPO that could value it at 100 million pounds ($142 million), Reuters reports citing sources.
• DFDS agreed to acquire U.N. Ro-Ro, an Istanbul-based freight shipping firm, for 950 million euros ($1.2 billion), from Actera Group. Esas Holdings were the sellers.
FIRMS + FUNDS
• Ardian closed on 230 million euros ($283 million) for its second fund.
• Lerer Hippeau raised $150 million for its sixth fund, according to an SEC filing.
• UVC Partners, a Munich-based early-stage venture capital firm focused on industrial technologies, raised €83 million ($102.3 million) for its second fund.
• Phil Sorgen joined Fusion Agiletech’s Board of Directors. Sorgen is a Microsoft executive.