Morning Report: Just What Is MongoDB Worth?

Morning Report: Let’s play What’s! That! Potentially! Former! Unicorn! Worth!

Yesterday, MongoDB filed its S-1, taking one more step towards going public. The company’s losses were notable, as was its slowing growth.

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The firm has quarters of cash in the bank at prior operational burn rates, but after 10 years, MongoDB looked a bit small compared to its 2015 valuation.

In 2015, when MongoDB picked up another $80 million — the firm would raise over $300 million before going public — it secured a $1.52 billion pre-money valuation. Add in the cash, and MongoDB was worth a cool $1.6 billion.

That figure looked incredibly steep compared to what we learned in the company’s filing. The firm generated just $40.8 million of revenue in all of calendar 2015. And since the company raised the $80 million in January, we can actually use that full-year result as a forward number with which to calculate what leading revenue multiple its investors paid: 39.21.

Hold your laughter! The company seems to have gotten its valuation house in order later on.

After we published our piece diving into Mongo’s financial, some DM-sliding occurred, and it was brought to our attention that on page F-34 there was a key note about a repricing of the company’s options:

On April 13, 2016, we amended all then-current employee and active non-employee stock options with an exercise price greater than $3.25 per share that remained outstanding and unexercised on such date to reprice their respective exercise prices to $3.25 per share, the fair market value of our common stock as of April 13, 2016, as determined by the Board of Directors. Pursuant to this repricing, options to purchase 13,797,483 shares of common stock were repriced, including options to purchase 6,607,572 shares of common stock held by our executive officers. We determined the total incremental compensation expenses related to the repriced awards was $10.7 million, of which $5.6 million was recorded in the year ended January 31, 2017 and $1.2 million in the six months ended July 31, 2017 (unaudited).

(This is likely why the company had a single-quarter spike in share-based compensation costs in the period ending April 30, 2016.)

Hold that in your mind, and sum it with the following from The Information, which notes the above-quoted repricing and the company’s most recent options issuance, leading to a potential new valuation mark for MongoDB:

The company last week issued stock options at an exercise price of $6.75 per share, equivalent to a valuation of only around $700 million, and it repriced options last year as well. We don’t know yet where the IPO will price, but a lot of shareholders would be ready for a lower valuation on the public markets.

A regular Crunchbase News source disputed that valuation modestly, noting that it might be a bit light. If anyone wants to crawl through the math this morning and send it in, we’ll welcome it. But we are not going to kick that particular bear until our third coffee.

What matters is that it seems MongoDB realized that its valuation had gotten ahead of its performance and curtailed its price. How that impacts its IPO valuation, and market expectations thereof, is our next question.

Homework: For fun, would you peg a fair valuation for MongoDB at less than or above $1 billion?

From The Crunchbase Daily: 

MongoDB files for IPO

  • The latest unicorn to file for an IPO is MongoDB, a provider of cloud-based database services that had previously raised more than $300 million in venture funding. The New York-based company has been growing revenue at a fast rate, but, like many tech IPO candidates, it remains deeply unprofitable.

Flexport raises $110M

  • Flexport, a provider of software for managing freight shipments, has raised $110 million in a Series C funding round that values the San Francisco-based company at around $800 million, TechCrunch reports. Investors in the round reportedly include DST and other existing backers.

Baidu puts $1.5B into self-driving cars

  • Chinese Internet giant Baidu is allocating $1.5 billion for a new fund, focused on autonomous driving technologies. The newly formed Apollo Fund, named after Baidu’s self-driving vehicle platform, plans to invest in 100 projects in the next three years.

Automaker startup deals pile up

  • When it comes to startup investment, carmakers are all over the road. Recently, we’ve seen a massive spike in venture funding by major auto manufacturers. But a Crunchbase News analysis of funding activity by large automakers finds wide variance in investment sizes, timing, and focus.
  • For more stories, follow @crunchbasenews on Twitter and check us out on Facebook.

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