Slack just raised $160 million at a $2.8 billion valuation.
One month ago the number was $1 billion. The growth and raising ability simple blown people away. Everyone is rambling. “SaaS is now sexy.”, “Investors are pushing valuation.”, “Oh they didn’t even start spending all those money from the previous round! Why did they raise again?” and of course the obligatory talk:
“Damn, it’s a bubble.”
I won’t get into the bubble talk, as it is not us to judge whether it’s a bubble or not. Even if I show tons of evidence, hundreds of graphs, thousands of stats to try to prove my point, people with opposite point of view will always be able to pull out more. At the end of the day, both party are simply listing things to prove themselves, and trying harder to convince the other side of the table. It won’t change anything. If it’s a frenzy, it still will be. And it won’t end because there are people arguing about it.
I will, however, show my respect to Stewart again. I am the biggest Slack fan I have ever seen, and you read it right. I truly am. But just to be clear, I don’t know if a company with a current $12 mil annual revenue should be estimated at $2.8 bil. I also have no idea how a B2B company can grow this fast. But the dude himself will agree with me too. He literally said he has no fucking idea.
If people are willing to buy a portion of something at that price, they can do it. And I don’t see any reason for Slack to turn down the offer as well.
Q: So do you think Slack is worth $3 billion?
A: It is, because people say it is.
It is literally the best time to raise now, for an entrepreneur. Nikola Tesla ran out of money and was forced to shover coal in order to pay for himself and his inventions. And I bet Nikola will die to be in a days we are living in right now, where there are people waving checks at you because they want to grow your company just like you do. They want to be a part of the game.
Don’t hate the player, hate the game.
I cannot think of any reason for people to hating on high valuation besides jealousy. To quote James Franco and Seth Rogen in The Interview: I believe they were simply peanut butter and jealous. Or to quote Marc Andreessen, “I don’t think valuations should be like the main topic of discussion.”
Yes. It shouldn’t be. People should be talking about the company itself. The tool they build. The community they created. Not the virtal number that might means nothing after a couple of months. It either collapse or sky-rocket. It doesn’t matter. It’s the time we are living it that worth its own discussion.
The odds of new companies doing interesting things getting started would go up.
Isn’t all this fuzz and buzz essientially a good thing? VCs are having more money at their hands and they are also competiting with the value more than money most of the times. The market is transparent, and almost impossible to hide your dirty little secret from the world. Start-ups and VCs are in a perfect situation when they can freely choose who to work with. Great products are being built on a daily-basis, and eager to be shown to the world. And these products are within consumers’ reach as long as they have access to internet, something an ex-startup called Facebook is trying to bring to everyone in the world.
Some of them will fail eventually. Hell, most of them will fail. But then, you have the best of the bests standing still and survive. And isn’t that the beauty of it? YC alums are doing it the right way. If they fail, they always can join another YC company. And the stronger team will become stronger.
Am I cool with it? You bet I am.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness.
I hate to quote this greating saying-turned-cliche. But it suits us well. We are all in this together. Create, deliver, and change the world into a better place.