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With names like Uber, Lyft, and potentially even Slack expected to IPO next year, 2019 could be record breaking for the world of public offerings.
On Monday, The Wall Street Journal took a dive into another firm said to be exploring an IPO during the year: Secretive data analytics unicorn Palantir.
Reportedly prompted by investors and employees who want to more easily sell their shares, Palantir is now hoping to become “a more traditional operation” and reforming its image for being “overconfident, condescending and even sloppy.”
For instance, CEO Alex Karp has said to have been on an apology tour in Washington D.C. (the U.S. government being a major client). In the past, Palantir employees appeared to eschew tradition, per a 2017 Fortune article on the firm’s failure to win a major government contract:
“Much of the problem seemed rooted in the fact that Palantir was still not playing according to the rules and traditions of the club. When Philippone and his staff showed up at the Pentagon for their initial meetings, for example, some wore their usual T-shirts, sneakers, and jeans. (“I told them not to dress like that,” recalls one lobbyist.) And everyone, especially Philippone, showed up with the attitude that the Army had spent years failing at data platforms, and that they could fix it all without some big, new development contract—the kind of contract the people on the other side of the table had devoted their careers to awarding and administering.”
Like Uber, Lyft, and Slack, Palantir has yet to post a profit ahead of a potential public offering. The Journal reports that Karp has told investors to expect profitability in 2019, though he has made similar promises before—including a prediction of net gains by 2017.
Though this time, following the loss of multimillion-dollar contracts with the likes of Hershey and J.P. Morgan, the company is also cutting costs. That includes offloading properties and getting tougher on employee purchases such as international business-class travel.
Lobsters and salmon may also be breathing a sigh of relief at this reform, as, per the Journal:
“Its engineers were accustomed to spending profligately—the company sponsored 13-course tasting-menu lunches with lobster tail and sashimi at headquarters—calling such extravagance ‘Palantir Entitlement Syndrome.’”
Read the story here.
THE LATEST FROM FORTUNE…
• Exclusive: Cloud Securer Netskope Raises $170 Million, Sprouts ‘Unicorn’ Horn
• Monsanto Is Boosting Bayer’s Bottom Line, Even With the Looming Risk of More Roundup Cancer Cases
• Nested, a London-based real estate agent using data to time home sales, raised 120 million pounds ($129 million) in funding. Northzone and Balderton Capital were among the investors.
• Harpoon Therapeutics Inc, a South San Francisco-based clinical-stage immunotherapy company, raised $70 million in Series C funding. OrbiMed led the round, and was joined by investors including Cormorant, Ridgeback Capital Investments, Lilly Asia Ventures, NS Investment, MPM Capital, Oncology Impact Fund, Arix Bioscience, New Leaf Venture Partners, and Taiho Ventures LLC.
• Clearbanc, a Toronto-based firm that invests in entrepreneurs, raised $70 million in fundings. Investors included Emergence Capital, Social Capital, CoVenture, Founders Fund, 8VC, iNovia Capital, Real Ventures, Portag3, Precursor, WTI, Berggruen, and FJ Labs.
• Spin Memory, a Fremont, Cal.-based MRAM developer, raised $52 million in Series B funding. Applied Ventures led the round.
• Framer, an Amsterdam-based maker of an interactive design platform, raised $24 million in Series B funding. Atomico led the round.
• 4iQ, a Los Altos, Calif. and Madrid-based cybersecurity firm, raised $18 million in funding. C5 Capital Limited led the round.
• AEGEA Medical Inc, a Menlo Park, Calif.-based medical device company, raised $17 million in funding. Solas BioVentures led the round.
• Flyability, a Lausanne, Switzerland-based maker of collision-tolerant aerial inspection drones, raised $11 million in Series B funding.
• Simple Habit, a San Francisco-based stress relief app, raised $10 million in Series A funding. Foundation Capital led the round.
• SmartRent, a Phoenix, Ariz.-based smart home company, raised $5 million in funding. Real Estate Technology Ventures led the round.
• Portal, an ad-free video and audio sharing platform, raised $4.2 million in seed funding. Mark Cuban, Day One Ventures, and Social Starts are among the investors.
• Looxid Labs, a Seoul, South Korea-based startup tracking emotions using brainwaves and eye movement, raised $4 million in Series A funding. Hastings Asset Management, Daesung Private Equity, Sejong Venture Partners, and Samsung Venture investment were the lead investors.
• Checkmate, a New York City-based platform that integrates multiple online ordering services into POS systems for restaurants as nations, raised $3 million in Series A funding. Tiger Global Management led the round.
• Guardian Optical Technologies, a Tel Aviv-based tech startup, raised $2.5 million in funding. Investors included Union Ventures and B&E Equities.
• WeRecover, a Santa Monica-based online booking engine for addiction recovery centers, raised another $2M in seed funding. Crosslink Capital led the round.
PRIVATE EQUITY DEALS
• Altacrest Capital acquired Barton Watch Bands, an Austin, Texas-based producer of interchangeable watch bands.
• Perella Weinberg Partners Growth Equity invested in Quick Med Claims, a Pittsburgh-based solution covering the medical claims cycle. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Da Vinci Capital, took a non-controlling stake in DataArt, a New York-based software consultancy firm. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Montagu Private Equity acquired Eastman Kodak’s flexographic packaging division. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• SkyKnight Capital invested in WhiteWater, a Houston, Texas-based car wash operator. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• LBC Credit Partners and Wells Fargo Capital Finance recapitalized AirBorn Inc, a Georgetown, Texas-based maker of electronic components. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• BTI Studios, a portfolio company of Shamrock Capital, acquired Berliner Synchron Gmbh, a German dubbing studio, from S&L Medien Gruppe. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Kellogg will sell Keebler, Famous Amos, and its fruit snacks businesses, CNBC reports citing sources.
• SCHOTT AG, a German tech firm focused on specialty glass and glass-ceramics, acquired a significant stake in Smart Skin Technologies, a Canadian company measuring line pressure in glass and other mediums. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Finablr, an Abu Dhabi-based firm operating Travelex and UAE Exchange, boosted its stake in Swych, a Dallas-based digital gifting platform. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• HollyFrontier Corp agreed to acquire Sonneborn, a Parsippany, N.J.-maker of purified white oil, from One Equity Partners for $655 million.
• Celestica Inc. (NYSE, TSX: CLS) agreed to acquire Impakt Holdings, a Santa Clara, Calif.-based provider of design, engineering, and agile manufacturing solutions, from Graycliff Partners for $329 million.
• PPC Partners agreed to acquire Plaskolite, a Columbus, Oh.-based provider of transparent thermoplastic sheet products, from Charlesbank Capital Partners. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
FIRMS + FUNDS
• Pike Street Capital Partners plans to raise $200 million for a new fund, based on a SEC filing.
• Real Estate Technology Ventures raised $108 million for its first fund
• Resolute Ventures plans to raise $75 million in its fourth venture-capital fund, based on a SEC filing.• Michael Linse’s Linse Capital plans to raise $65 million for its fifth venture-capital fund based on a SEC filing.
• Manatt Phelps & Phillips LLP hired Lisa Suennen as head of the firm’s venture capital fund. Previously, Suennen was managing partner at Venture Valkyrie.
• DWS Group named Kumber Husain as head of private equity, Americas. Previously, he was at Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners.