Some tech companies shy away from putting a date on going public—or even making a decision about whether they plan to list their businesses at all. At GitLab, Sid Sijbrandij already has a date set: November 18, 2020.
There’s symbolic meaning behind it: Two days before is the birthdate of the twin children of the CFO of GitLab, a leader in the expanding area of tech known as DevOps. But that’s a Monday. Better to go out midweek, Sijbrandij thought—and on his grandfather’s 100th birthday. “You talk about how you are going to achieve things, and internally we can say, this is where we are going,” he says.
A tech “unicorn” setting such specifics is unusual. But GitLab isn’t feeling any pressure. Investors are eager to pour funds into the company, which says its annualized revenue is growing at a rate of 143% year-to-year, with net retention of customer spending at 153%. The latest: a $268 million Series E funding round that values GitLab at $2.75 billion. The round more than doubles GitLab’s valuation from its previous funding round, when it was valued at $1.1 billion, a year ago.