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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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus