Friday, November 25, 2016
Secretive $20 billion startup Palantir has raised another $20 million from a single backer
As noted by TechCrunch, the Form D filing lists November 8 as the date of first sale, and says that the funding came from one backer, who wasn't identified. Other details are scarce.
Palantir did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The $20 million figure is a curiously low amount for a company that led an $880 million round of funding last December, has raised more than $2 billion total, and is said to be valued at $20 billion as a whole.
Formed in 2004 — with CIA money, in part — Palantir is simultaneously one of the biggest and most buttoned-up companies in Silicon Valley. It sells data-sifting and management tools to US government defense and intelligence agencies, as well as finance, healthcare, and other corporations, but has notoriously shielded its activities from the public.
The past year has been a rocky one for the company, too, with lawsuits against investors, accusations of racial discrimination in hiring, and a reported loss of employees and big-name clients. And while the company is said to be hauling in large amounts of revenue, recent reports have said it isn't yet profitable.
The appointment of Gen. Michael Flynn as Trump's national security adviser could be a boon as well. A recent BuzzFeed report claimed that Flynn has quietly advocated for Palantir's technology.
And in October, the company won a lawsuit against the US Army that put it back in the running to win a data systems contract worth more than $200 million.
The $20 million raised here isn't anywhere close to being that valuable, but it does suggest that some are still high on the tight-lipped startup.