Race to the Cloud, But Do Citrix, Podio Have it All Wrong?
The cloud obsession continues to skyrocket. But is it too much, too soon?
You can't go a day without hearing something about the cloud: new startups, new cloud-based services, new rounds of funding to support these ventures, etc. In the last 10 days, Citrix (NASDAQ: CTXS) announced that it would buy a cloud-based company called Podio (via PC World); Evernote announced that it completed a $100 million round of financing (via Business Insider); and Eucalyptus, an open source startup for private cloud computing, raised $30 million from the likes of VMware (NYSE: VMW), IVP, and Benchmark (via TechCrunch).
These are just the companies that popped up when I did a quick search this morning. Throughout the week, I came across other news items regarding the cloud, most of which make it abundantly clear that thousands of investors and corporate executives expect to make billions of dollars on this newfangled technology.
But will they?
If nothing else, Citi is taking a positive view of Citrix's stock, raising its price target this week from $78 to $88. But what does the future really hold for cloud computing?
Not that long ago, investors clamored for every dot-com they could get their hands on. They were correct in believing that the World Wide Web would forever change the way we conducted business. They were also smart to realize the potential for entertainment that's delivered over the Internet, as this field continues to grow with each passing year. But this potential blinded investors, causing them to pour billions of dollars into every catchy dot-com that came around.
Sound familiar? Instead of holding onto the harsh memory of the dot-com collapse, many people believe that it's smart to dump all of their money into a cloud computing company. But let's face the facts: even in a perfect world, some companies will fail.
Unfortunately, our world is not anywhere near perfect. You'd be wise to remember that the next time you want to make a cloud investment.
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