Dropbox seeks more funding at whopping $8B valuation -- report

Here's another one for the Silicon Valley bubble forecasters: The file-hosting startup is looking for another $250 million at a mind-bogglingly high valuation, reports Businessweek.

Dropbox CEO Drew Houston. Dan Farber/CNET

File-hosting service Dropbox has raised $257 million to date, and it's looking to double that entire amount in a massive round of funding that values the startup at $8 billion, Businessweek reported Monday.

Dropbox has been a tech industry darling since its Y Combinator days in 2007, and has routinely found itself on list after list forecasting the next big tech IPO in the wake of Twitter's earlier this month. Dropbox CEO and co-founder Drew Houston has broad ambitions too, likening his company to Microsoft in the '90s for its ability to cater to everyday consumers and corporate clients.

So while Dropbox has yet to use all of its cash from its last financing round, this next round of funding at $250 million could further its business plans -- which it revamped last week -- and keep the company soaring.

However, the news won't bode well for the Silicon Valley detractors. While more profitable than Snapchat by default, Dropbox is yet another company alongside the likes of Square, Pinterest, Airbnb, and other maturing startups milking what some fear to be a colossal bubble bound to burst .

But at more than 200 million individual users and 4 million businesses, Dropbox has a tried-and-true business model that could very well take it past this massive funding round and toward its eventual IPO, though Houston has been adamant on keeping details of that timeline under wraps.

"What we can say is that with over 200 million users and 4 million businesses, Dropbox has continued [a] strong momentum," Ana Andreescu, a Dropbox spokeswoman, told Businessweek's Ashlee Vance.

That momentum has fashioned Dropbox into somewhat of a startup superhero. It has grown its user base 10 times over in the last three years, and is earning hundreds of millions of dollars a year in revenue while venturing into the acquisition game with smart snatches like e-mail optimization app Mailbox.

Its largest competitor is the more enterprise-focused Box, run by the equally young and ambitious Aaron Levie. Box has raised more than $300 million, which got its jump on Dropbox by two years yet failed to rocket in growth due in part to its business-side focus. Box is eyeing a 2014 IPO, leaving it unclear whether or not Dropbox's catch-up game in the enterprise space and continual funding hunt will hamper its lofty ambitions.

About the author

Nick Statt is a staff writer for CNET. He previously wrote for ReadWrite and was a news associate at the social magazine app Flipboard. He spends a questionable amount of his free time contemplating his relationship with video games while continuously exploring the convergence of tech, science and pop culture.

 

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