Cover image for Cloud Wars Live with Sean Ammirati: The Unicorn Explosion
Cover image for Cloud Wars Live with Sean Ammirati: The Unicorn Explosion

The Unicorn Explosion | Ammirati on Innovation

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Each month, “Ammirati on Innovation” episodes will look at ways that the disruptive-startup mentality is spreading beyond young entrepreneurs to big established corporations. Serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist and Carnegie Mellon B-school professor Sean Ammirati, who sits at the intersection of these high-change dynamics, provides insight. Today, Sean and I discuss the valuation news around DigitalOcean: how does it stack up against red-hot Snowflake, what can it tell us about IaaS and Wall Street, plus more.

Episode 24

The Big Themes:

  • Plotted on a bell curve: Some are amazing, and some are terrible – and some are in the middle.
  • Stability is not the issue: There’s capital behind these companies that give you the same amount of runway you could expect from any of the other kinds of companies.
  • The term unicorn was coined: You needed to raise money at least a billion dollar valuation from one company in your portfolio to make that portfolio be a top performing venture portfolio.
  • Microsoft and Nuance: You have the sales, the partnership, and the marketing muscle that a company like Microsoft can provide.

The Big Quotes:

  • “The more interesting thing to me was that in the first five months of 2021, there were 187 companies that for the first time raised money at over a billion-dollar valuation.”
  • “The thing that’s more concerning to me is I think there’s a lot of reflection we, as an industry, need to do on the right way to create healthy corporate governance among these companies.”
  • “I think it’s time for CFOs to stop worrying about just doing the logistics.”
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Follow Sean on Twitter and LinkedIn for more valuable insights into innovation and entrepreneurship. Check out his podcast, Agile Giants.

Stream more episodes of Ammirati on Innovation, via Cloud Wars Live.

Cloud Wars Live Digital All-Stars

Sean Ammirati is one of our regular Digital All-Stars. The All-Stars are experts whose video podcasts will focus on the critical themes shaping (and re-shaping!) the business world here in the digital age of 2021. Our intention is to provide regular chunks of timely ideas and insights about high-priority subjects from industry veterans with diverse backgrounds.

This episode is brought to you by BMC Software.