Shares of online storage company Box surge after IPO

Box sees strong start on Wall Street after IPO

Online data storage provider Box Inc. was strong out of the gate during its public trading debut Friday morning in the first big Silicon Valley IPO of the year. 

Shares of the company were trading at $23.34, up $9.34, or 67%, from its initial offering price of $14 a share on the New York Stock Exchange. The IPO raised $175 million and valued the company at nearly $1.7 billion.

Corporations subscribe to Box to get digital lockers connected to the Internet, enabling workers to access files from any computer linked to the Web. Box, which traces its roots to Chief Executive Aaron Levie's days at USC, counts 48% of Fortune 500 companies as a customers.

But its sales and marketing costs as well as competition from companies such as Microsoft have spooked some on Wall Street. Friday's positive debut could be seen as a sign that many investors see potential in Box's attempt to push deeper into corporate data services.

paresh.dave@latimes.com

javier.panzar@latimes.com 

Twitter: @peard33 & @jpanzar 

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