The current generation of tech entrepreneurs are shunning public markets for as long as they can. This long form FT article explores the exclusive nature of the tech industry’s private investment frenzy and the concerns about how widely the profits from the boom are being shared.
As a demonstration of the new supremacy of the private markets, last week was noteworthy. It began with news that Uber was on track to increase its total capital raising to $10bn, a record for a private tech company. That was followed by the revelation that Palantir, a secretive artificial intelligence company, was in talks to raise hundreds of millions of dollars at a valuation of $20bn, potentially putting it second only to Uber (value: $50bn) in the pecking order of private tech groups. Palantir’s new status was shortlived. By the end of the week, Airbnb was on the brink of a new investment round of its own, valuing it at $24bn, more than double the $10bn it was deemed to be worth 15 months ago.