Neo4j looks forward to IPO as graph database market grows

The Panama Papers were "a lightning strike" for the graph database market that have unlocked "tremendous value", Neo4j CEO Eifrem believes.


Neo4j's Eifrem: "Panama Papers was a lightning strike."

Image: Neo4j

Neo4j is considering accelerating its IPO plans on the back of its success in driving the graph database market.

The company's CEO, Emil Eifrem, told the audience at its Graph Connect Europe: "Now I feel confident, very, very confident that we're going to have the numbers to go this year".

But later Eifrem was keen to stress that 2020 remained the target, while going earlier remained an option.

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Eifrem said he feels confident because the company has benefitted "massively" from the impact of the last year's Panama Papers revelations, where much of the analysis was done using its graph database technology.

"The Panama Papers was a lightning strike," he told ZDNet. "I think that entire community learned that there's another way to work with data."

Since then the company has been on a rapid growth path, he said, and he sees a public offering as the next logical step in that growth. He sees the trend as a reflection of the power of the technology which has take the database world by storm.

But the company would only go public when "the time was right", he said. "In 2011, we said we would IPO in 2020. Now IPO is a mechanism -- it's one path along the way."

Eifrem believes that the Panama Papers underlined the potential of the graph database market. "We have seen that there is a tremendous amount of business value in taking your business and re-imagining it along connections," he said.

"That's what Google did. That's what Facebook did. That's what LinkinIn did. In the consumer web alone, the companies that have done that shift have unlocked over a trillion dollars' worth of market cap," he said.

"The way I see it, all these companies have gone into industries that are very high-tech and worked with data but the data has worked in isolation," Eifrem said. "But were they have said, 'Let's connect up the data', that has unlocked those trillion dollars."

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