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2 Things to Watch for Box's Upcoming IPO

By Erin Kennedy and Evan Niu, CFA – Mar 25, 2014 at 4:32PM

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Box's Aaron Levie is just 29 years young, yet has made a name for himself. What valuation will Box sport when it finally goes public?

Box CEO and co-founder Aaron Levie has been instrumental in setting the company's direction, even though he's only 29 years old. That's comparable to Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, who is also 29 years old. Young visionary CEOs like Levie and Zuckerberg aren't uncommon within the tech sector. Levie still has approximately 3.7 million shares of Box, or a 4% stake. Like many other companies, Box will use a dual-class structure where insiders own super-voting shares. Levie's interests will likely remain aligned with shareholders, though.

The IPO valuation remains to be seen, but if Box gets valued at $5 billion, then that represent a price-to-sales multiple of around 40. That would be a hefty price to pay for the fast-growing start-up. Another difficulty in assessing Box's valuation is that there are no publicly traded comparable pure plays on enterprise storage. All larger rivals have more diverse IT portfolios, making comparative analysis challenging.

In this segment of Tech Teardown, Erin Kennedy discusses Box's upcoming IPO with Evan Niu, CFA, our tech and telecom bureau chief.

Erin Kennedy has no position in any stocks mentioned. Evan Niu, CFA has the following options: short January 2015 $60 puts on Facebook and long January 2015 $35 puts on Facebook. The Motley Fool recommends Facebook. The Motley Fool owns shares of Facebook. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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