Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes

GitHub Valued at $750M With First Outside Funding Ever

Coding collaboration start-up GitHub has raised $100 million from Andreessen Horowitz in a highly competitive deal.

The investment is Andreessen Horowitz’s largest ever, and it’s only a Series A round for the company. GitHub was valued at more than $600 million, according to a source familiar with the deal. Update: The number is actually $750 million.

Many venture capitalists had hoped to snag GitHub for their trophy portfolios. The company has been bootstrapped and profitable for the past five years, while becoming crucial to many companies’ tech operations, and a sort of living resume for coders.

While over half the code hosted on GitHub is open source and free, the company makes its money by charging companies for private code repositories.

“We knew that GitHub was going to work as a company when during the private beta people started offering to pay,” said CEO Tom Preston-Werner. “We made thousands the first day we launched.”

GitHub has 100 employees, approximately half of whom work remotely. It has 1.7 million users on its hosted site (it also offers an installable version) with just more than three million code projects.

Preston-Werner said that the attraction to Andreessen Horowitz came initially from Marc Andreessen’s famous essay from last year, on software eating the world. Andreessen Horowitz partner Peter Levine is joining the GitHub board, in the hope that he can impart operational knowledge about growing teams from Citrix and Veritas.

“We have a list of features a mile long,” Preston-Werner said. “The money is going to help us find the very best people.”

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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