Online-storage startup Box postpones IPO

Box could well have launched itself onto public markets this month. But it has fought off that impulse as stocks for cloud companies have faltered in recent weeks. Instead, the cloud-based file-sharing company could end up making its debut on the New York Stock Exchange in June, according to a report today from the Wall Street Journal. Cloud software companies like Marketo, Netsuite, Salesforce.com, Workday, and Xero have tumbled lately.

Investors’ love affair with cloud software companies is waning at the worst possible time for Box Inc. The online-storage startup is delaying its plans for an initial public offering after a sudden weakening in demand for technology stocks. Box’s March 24 IPO filing made it eligible to list shares as early as April, but people close to the company said the offering may not happen until June, and no timing has been set. A Box spokeswoman declined to comment, citing the IPO quiet period. Companies that sell online, or cloud, software to businesses, have been particularly hard hit in a U.S. stock-market gyration now into its second month. Investors were largely content to overlook strings of losses at sellers of corporate software, such as WorkdayInc., WDAY -0.31% used in human-resource departments, and instead focused on their fast-growing revenue. But cloud has shifted from a magic word to a dirty one for many investors.

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