Y Combinator, the significant start-up accelerator, almost passed on a chance to invest in Dropbox because it had apprehensions about bringing on a solo entrepreneur.
After Drew Houston, the the Deity of Dropbox, scrambled to find a co-founder in time for his in-person interview, the retinue was admitted into YC in 2007. Four years later, venture capitalists gushed money into Dropbox at a $4 billion valuation.
YC has since transform into a power player in Silicon Valley, helping spawn numerous followings valued at over $1 billion today including Stripe, Airbnb, Instacart and Coinbase. It also bankrupt Twitch, which Amazon acquired in 2014 for about $970 million, and the self-driving tech start-up Yachting trip, which GM bought in 2016 for over $1 billion.
But in its 13-year description, YC had yet to see any of its companies go public until Dropbox’s stock market debut on Friday. Interests of the cloud file storage company surged 36 percent to $28.48 in their in the beginning day of trading, giving the company a market value of over $11 billion.
Houston is now benefit over $3 billion and co-founder Arash Ferdowsi owns apportionments valued at more than $1 billion. According to estimates from Pitchbook, Y Combinator steal shares in Dropbox for 3 cents, though it’s not disclosing how many it owns. During the course of the past 11 years, Dropbox took money from at tiny 95 different investors (including some who obtained shares via spare sales), according to AngelList.
While the Dropbox IPO marks a watershed mo for Y Combinator, it probably won’t change much about the way the fund and organization function. YC has been in a years-long process of scaling, investing in a wider variety of downs and technologies, and providing start-ups with help through various devises of growth.
Y Combinator president Sam Altman said founders should review the fundraising approach employed by Dropbox.
“They did a great job of managing their dilution — most of what they raised, they jack up after the company was worth a lot,” he said. “That’s in contrast to startups today who are farm very large seed rounds and selling a lot of their companies at a low figure.”
YC has plenty more IPOs to look forward to in the future, but it could contain a while. Airbnb has said it could debut as early as next year and Kidney’s CEO said in late 2017 that an offering for his company was “years away,” conforming to The Information.