Alarm Clock says they have it on "high authority" that Internet photo service Shutterfly is about to file for an IPO led by Goldman Sachs. Founded in 1999, Shutterfly is one of those consumer Internet companies that weathered the post-bubble winter and is now ripe for the picking. A successful IPO would be a triumph for Jim Clark, the storied founder of Netscape and subject of Michael Lewis' 1999 book The New New Thing. Shutterfly was one of the last ventures Clark founded before he moved to Florida to escape Silicon Valley's funk.
Clark was one of several follow-on investors who participated in Shutterfly's fifth and most recent round of VC funding, a $2 million infusion in October 2002. Other participants included Mohr Davidow Ventures, Monaco Partners, and Tom Jermoluk, a former partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and ex-chairman of @Home.
Early last year, I met with one of Shutterfly's investors, who said the company was profitable and on track to do about $35 million in 2004 revenues. We'll know the precise numbers soon if our friends at AC are right.
My wife has been a regular customer of Shutterfly for years, and I've been consistently impressed by the quality of the photos. I'll be curious to hear how the company intends to duke it out with big competitors like Kodak and (gulp) Wal-Mart.