SolarWinds CEO: Why We're Going Public (Again)

October 19, 2018

By Christian Smith

Software company SolarWinds ($SWI), which went public on the New York Stock Exchange on Friday, isn't concerned about the bumpy market for tech stocks, said CEO Kevin Thompson.

"We've got an advantage that we are a company that grows quickly, but we're incredibly profitable," Thompson said Friday in an interview on Cheddar.

"We generate 50 cents of profit on every dollar of revenue, which allowed us to get out in a market that other software companies really would have been afraid to brave."

Still, there were challenges to bear. The IT management software company not only cut the size of its initial public offering from 42 million shares to 25 million, but also priced its stock at $15 ー the low end of an already-reduced range. The stock closed the day up just $0.03.

SolarWinds isn't new to the public market. The company was previously listed on the New York Stock Exchange from 2009 until it was acquired by private equity firms Thoma Bravo and Silver Lake in 2016.

Thompson said that he learned major lessons from his operation's first stint as a public company.

"You've got to be patient, and you've got to make sure you're able to deliver on all of the commitments you make to Wall Street," Thompson said.

SolarWinds brought in almost $800 million in revenue in for the 12 months ended June 30, 2018.

Thompson said the company didn't need to raise capital, but doing so will help it pay down the debt it took on in going private and to get to its next phase.

"This is really the next step in our evolution," Thompson said.

For full interview click here.