Docker Said to Join $1 Billion Valuation Club With New Funding

Software startup Docker Inc. has raised funds at a valuation of about $1 billion, said a person with knowledge of the deal, who asked not to be identified because the number isn’t public.

Insight Venture Partners led a $95 million funding round, which included new investors Coatue, Goldman Sachs and Northern Trust, the company said in a statement Tuesday. Existing investors Benchmark, Greylock Partners, Sequoia Capital, Trinity Ventures and Jerry Yang’s AME Cloud Ventures also participated in the round, Docker said.

Docker is an an increasingly popular platform for building, shipping and running software applications. The company oversees the development of the technology, which is freely available and supported by cloud-computing and software providers such as Google Inc., International Business Machines Corp., Microsoft Corp. and Amazon.com Inc. Since debuting in 2013, more than 100,000 software applications have been tweaked to work on Docker, which was developed by Chief Technology Officer Solomon Hykes.

David Messina, a spokesman for San Francisco-based Docker, declined to comment on the valuation.

Docker raised $40 million in September at a valuation said to be at around $400 million. Combined, the company has now raised about $160 million to date.

While the startup develops free software and has 120 employees, Docker Chief Executive Officer Ben Golub said the investment is justified because of its growing popularity. More than 330 million bits of Docker software have been downloaded from the company’s website, up from 3 million in June, and the number of Docker projects on the online software code repository GitHub have jumped to more than 35,000 from 6,500 that same month.

Chasing Sales

Last year Docker earned less than $10 million in revenue, Golub confirmed. He’s betting that wider use of the technology will let it build a profitable business of providing support and services to Docker users, as well as through an online marketplace and software designed for enterprises.

Investors are betting on Docker’s ability to improve Web-based software and technology in a wide number of areas, including networking, security and software deployment, Golub said.

“It’s like the fable of the five blind men and the elephant,” Golub says. “Everyone who touches Docker has a different interpretation depending on where they are.”