Cuban Stands By His Decision To Sell Back His Shares in the Company
Earlier this week, Box filed for an initial public offering.
The offering, which will seek to raise $250 million, will value the company in the many hundreds of millions of dollars, if not more.
Much has been made of Mark Cuban's initial interest in the company. The story goes that when Box.net was just starting out, its founders sent Mark Cuban (of Shark Tank, Dallas Mavericks, Broadcast.com, etc) an unsolicited email seeking an initial injection of cash. Cuban liked what he heard and wrote the company a check for $350,000.
Mark Cuban was the first investor in the company, so surely he is set to make a mint on the initial public offering? Not so.
Cuban and Box's co-founders, Aaron Levie and Dylan Smith, disagreed on the future direction of the company. Cuban found himself unable to continue as an investor in the company, so he sold his shares to Draper Fisher Jurvetson in 2006.
The storyline over the past few weeks has been that Box.net is the "one that got away" for Cuban, but he is adamant that he did the right thing in ditching his stake in the company.
To start, Cuban says that he would have been "diluted to nothing" and that his stake in the company, had he remained, wouldn't have been nearly as large as people like to think.
In addition, Cuban says that the massive losses at Box ($112.6 million and $168.6 million over the past two years) would have caused him to "combust" - here is his exact Tweet:
"I wish @BoxHQ the best but I would combust if 8 years in I was responsible for $169mm in losses against less revs.I hope IPO gets them going"
In the end, Mark Cuban should be commended for choosing to quietly sell his stake in the company when it became apparent that he wasn't on board with the company's future direction.