The Cloud 100 companies of 2022 are much larger by valuation, number of employees, and funding metrics than those that made last year’s list, but there are fewer newcomers, fewer big new valuations, and fewer IPOs. These are signs of an industry maturing, but waves of tech layoffs and valuation corrections, coupled with the market slump of recent months, have also played a part in shaping the list, which is still dominated by companies from the San Francisco Bay Area (47), and Stripe, Databricks and Canva, returning to the top three again this year. The median Cloud 100 company in 2022 has an $8 billion valuation, $609 million in funding, and 1,313 employees. Those numbers are much higher than comparable numbers for 2021: a $5.2 billion valuation, $475 million in financing and 1,036 employees. Having larger companies and fewer newcomers (20, down from 29) on this year’s list is a “self-fulfilling prophecy,” says Sid Nag, vice president of analysts at Gartner. Right now, it’s more difficult for startups, especially late-stage ones, to amass the large amounts of funds that would help them grow quickly. That makes it a little easier for existing companies to duplicate and get ahead, Nag says: “If new companies don’t make the list, existing companies will grow and dominate the list, right?” The median metrics are smaller than average, as the largest companies on the list comprise an outsized portion of their totals. The top three companies, Stripe, Databricks, and Canva, alone account for more than a fifth of the total valuation on the list. Still, the list’s medians for valuation, funding, and number of employees reflect the same upward trends as their corresponding medians: In 2022, the median Cloud 100 company had a valuation of $5 billion, $535 million dollars in financing and 1,000 employees. The 2021 median company had a $3 billion valuation, $358 million in funding, and 718 employees. However, in recent months, with venture capitalists taking a more risk-averse approach and slowing the pace of funding, some companies are experiencing valuation corrections. Notably, Stripe (1st) has internally cut its $95 billion valuation by 28%, as reported by the Wall Street Journal. In addition, venture capital firm Blackbird, a major Canva investor (3rd), cut Canva’s valuation by $14 billion, or more than a third, the Australian Financial Review reported. After the market boom and hype of 2021, some of these companies are “going back to reality and lowering their valuation appropriately,” says Nag. The 80 companies returning to this year’s Cloud 100 ranking have reported the same or higher number of employees than last year. This increase in hiring reflects both explosive growth in 2021 and confidence in the continuation of that growth. In some cases, however, that trust seems misplaced. In the list as a whole, layoffs have been reported at nine companies in the last six months, including Snyk (20th), OneTrust (24th) and DataRobot (26th). The San Francisco Bay Area has long been known as a global hub for technology companies, especially in the cloud industry. This year, 47 Cloud 100 companies are headquartered there, five more than last year. The United States remains the primary home for most of the Cloud 100 companies, with 89 companies based in the country. And a small handful of locations have lost Cloud 100 companies this year, with China losing two, Utah losing three, and New York City losing three. While many of these companies may be working remotely or in a hybrid model, very few choose to identify as fully and officially remote: By that definition, this year’s list includes four remote companies, not an increase from the previous year. last year. Despite the looming recession, the two-decade-old cloud industry is expected to continue to expand, albeit at a slower pace and with fewer new players, according to Dan Ives, senior equity research analyst at Wedbush. “We’re still in cloud second entry,” says Ives. In his opinion, more companies will continue to migrate to the cloud in the coming years. For example, the ThoughtSpot (72nd), from a decade ago, successfully migrated to the cloud during the pandemic and is now valued at $4.2 billion, and others are following suit. “A slower short-term spending environment does not change the long-term upward trajectory of cloud.” To read more
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