Making the “Impossible Joint” This joint is made from wood. Can you guess how it works? At a first glance, this should
GitLab’s mega IPO
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Hello friends! Happy weekend. Up top, theres an extra Equity episode dropping today digging into the larger China-Microsoft dustup over LinkedIn. So if you need more on that, its coming. Lets go!
The key money story in Startup Land this week was the simply massive GitLab IPO.
In case you are behind, GitLab filed to go public, and we noted that at current market prices, the DevOps giant could be worth some $10 billion. That wound up being conservative. GitLab wound up raising its IPO price range far above its initial estimate and then pricing at $77. Late Friday afternoon, as I write to you, its worth more than $108 per share.
I got on the horn with GitLab CEO Sid Sijbrandij to chat about the deal. Ive nattered with Sijbrandij here and there for some time, starting back with this particular story. So it was good fun to talk to him on IPO day, constrained as he was by normal SEC rules. Heres what I learned:
Lets dive back to the news from late September that Cloudflare was moving into the storage as a service market. The news was that Cloudflare intends to offer cloud storage through its collection of global data centers. The product news was far afield from what Cloudflare is best known for, namely making websites appear more quickly and more securely.
Why was the now-public company getting into something as commodified as storage? At the time, Ron Miller wrote that Cloudflare was turning something it built for itself and offering it to others. And that by eliminating some fees, Cloudflares storage service R2 would be cheaper than what Amazon offers, for example, via its AWS collection of infra services.
I have had a thought. Namely, I will not be utterly gobsmacked if we see large, but not titanic, tech companies with a global footprint that offer a particular flavor of digital service also get into providing what appear to be initially niche infra tooling that competes modestly at first with what Amazon and Microsoft currently offer via AWS and Azure.
This may be Big Dumb, but we can explain ourselves a bit by analogy. My argument is akin to how Intel ran the world with its particular CPU methodology for a long time, only to lose the future to not only GPUs forced into the cryptocurrency salt mines, but also a grip of startups building, say, AI-tuned silicon. In our analogy, AWS is Intel and AI chips are things like R2 from Cloudflare.
The days when AWS and Azure were trading price cuts back and forth is behind us. Whats next?