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Nimble Storage Beats Expectations in NYSE Debut

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The initial public offering for flash storage company Nimble Storage is expected to raise $168 million on Friday. The price to purchase shares on the NYSE was set at $21 Thursday evening, from an initial target price of $16-18.

Nimble Storage sells flash-optimized hybrid storage systems, which are built from the ground up with high-capacity drives, a patented Cache Accelerated Sequential Layout architecture, and InfoSight, a service for managing the storage lifecycle. It offers seven different product lines grouped into two series, and promises higher storage efficiency than its competition, non-disruptive scaling, reduced operational overhead, and sub-millisecond latencies.

2013 has been an eventful year for the California-based company, which was founded in 2008. In March, webHOSTING.net upgraded its infrastructure with Nimble Storage arrays, and Nimble has continued a pattern of strong growth.

On the other hand, recently, Nimble was slapped with a legal complaint by NetApp that as it grew from a staff of 40 to 230, it poached employees and the information they had from the established competitor storage company. The complaint is unresolved.

Nimble Storage is the 218th company to hold an IPO on the NYSE in 2013, which is the largest number since 2000 and the dot-com boom. Many of those have been for data storage or hosting ecosystem companies, including QTS Realty Trust, which set shares at the same $21 starting price, and EIG, which fell well short of its goal of raising $400 million after the share price dropped by $2 during the IPO.

While the EIG IPO demonstrates some of the challenges technology companies face in convincing investors of their future value, the Nimble IPO may indicate the readiness of the investment community to buy into data storage.

Indeed, in early trading the price for Nimble shares surged over 40 percent, and as of 11 am ET Friday the share price had surpassed $30. If this spectacular success continues, expect to see more of Silicon Valley on Wall Street in 2014.

About the Author

Chris Burt is a WHIR contributor and writer of both fiction and non-fiction. His writing projects can be followed on Twitter @afakechrisburt.

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