Arik Hesseldahl

Recent Posts by Arik Hesseldahl

On Opening Day, Fusion-io Rises 18 Percent

Utah-based data storage company Fusion-io rose 18 percent in its first day of trading on the New York Stock exchange, closing at $22.50 a share, having first traded at $25.30. It priced at $19 a share yesterday, a dollar higher than its anticipated range of $16 to $18.

The company raised about $234 million in the offering yesterday and the results left it with a market capitalization of about $1.3 billion. About 13.9 million shares changed hands. Steve Wozniak, the Apple founder who is now a Fusion-io director and its chief scientist, bought the first 100 shares.

Fusion-io had better luck than Taomee Holdings, a Chinese children’s media company whose shares also debuted today. Having opened at $9 a share, it finished the day at $8.23, down more than 8 percent. It had anticipated trading in a range between $9 and $11 a share.

At Fusion-io’s closing price, the shares of CEO David Flynn, who owns about 9 percent of the company, are worth about $156 million. New Enterprise Ventures, which holds 26 million shares, cleared $585 million. Lightspeed Ventures, which has 8.8 million shares, has a stake worth almost $200 million.

A few minutes after he talked with me this morning, Flynn, pictured above with Woz, appeared on CNBC, and I snagged the video for you below. In it he answers questions about the concentration of his customer base — Facebook, Apple and eight other companies account for more than 90 percent of revenue — and uses the word “transformative” about 18 times. At least he’s on message!

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik