Ping Identity Picks Up $35M Led By KKR

Ping Identity, a company that works in the enterprise identity space, has raised $35 million, led by KKR, with participation by new investor Ten Eleven, along with a number of prior investors.

The funding, as the company was somewhat excited to point out, brings its total fundraising to date to $110 million. Ping hasn’t had much trouble raising, in other words.

The company sits in an interesting spot: Somewhere between private capital and an open IPO market. If I had to lay a wager, I would gamble that this may be Ping’s penultimate round of capital before it hits go on a public offering, provided that the equities markets do not shift dramatically.

I spoke with the company about how it would use the new funds. It demurred to specify a plan for the cash — the monies are thus not a single-issue voter.

According to the company, it has 1,200 customers, including half of the Fortune 100. Consider this the new vanity metric, the percentage of the Fortune $_xxx that you have. Box has 99 percent of the Fortune 500. Dropbox? Ninety-seven percent. Microsoft and Google? I’m betting 100 percent.

As to the amount of money that the company raised, why it wasn’t more or less, Ping CEO Andre Durand told TechCrunch that it was the proper amount of money for its needs, while also sitting appropriately between the want for outside capital to come into the firm, and the company’s normal preference for less dilution. Durand highlighted that the full cadre of his former investors participated in the round.

Ping’s bet is that managing identity for large companies in an increasingly diverse landscape of cloud services, devices, and, yes, legacy software is a difficult mix when it comes to security, and that large firms need help. The old model, Durand said, was simple: Keep everything internal, and build a firewall around it. That doesn’t work today.

Presuming that a chunk of the current information management spend can be pointed toward Ping’s industry, it could be a large business. I have no access to their financials, and thus cannot comment on their growth rates.

There are other companies operating in related spaces. The device management niche has been quite active lately — Good Technology has filed to go public, and rival firm MobileIron has pulled the trigger to decent results. It will be interesting to see if Ping is IPO-ready, and if so, when it intends to release its data to the public. For now, it has its money, and has a mandate to quickly execute.