[BENGALURU] Palantir Technologies is targeting a valuation of at least US$26 billion in a private fundraising round, the first for the Peter Thiel-backed data analytics startup in four years, people familiar with the matter said on Friday.
Palantir was valued at roughly US$20 billion in its last private fundraising round in 2015. If successful, the fundraising would show that venture capital firms are continuing to drive the valuations of Silicon Valley unicorns' higher, even as stock market investors are pushing back.
Another darling of the startup world, WeWork owner We Company, postponed its initial public offering (IPO) this week after it concluded that stock market investors may not even accept a third of the US$47 billion valuation it attained in a private fundraising round in January. The office-sharing startup unnerved potential IPO investors with its widening losses and its founder's firm grip on the company.
Palantir is looking to raise between US$1 billion to US$3 billion, the sources said. It expects to command a valuation of between US$26 billion and US$30 billion, the sources added, requesting anonymity because the matter is confidential.
Palantir has held talks with a number of late-stage venture capital investors about participating in the latest fundraising round, including Japan's SoftBank Group and sovereign wealth funds, according to the sources.
Palantir is working with Royal Bank of Canada and Morgan Stanley on the fundraising, one of the sources said. The company is considering an IPO in 2021 at the earliest, the sources said, cautioning the plans are still subject to change.
Palantir and Royal Bank of Canada declined to comment. Morgan Stanley did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Palantir has raised roughly US$2.75 billion from investors to date, according to data provider PitchBook.
Palantir, whose customers range from global banks to the US government and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), specialises in crunching and analysing large quantities of data.
The company's technology aided the US government's successful search for Osama bin Laden, according to multiple media reports.