As Palantir Technologies ($PLTR) made its long-anticipated public debut, CFO David Glazer said the secretive software company isn't anticipating many headwinds from the upcoming election.
"Palantir has been in business for three different administrations on the U.S. side, both Democratic and Republican, five different prime ministers in the UK, four in France," Glazer told Cheddar. "Really we're focused on contracting day-in, day-out with the civil servants that are running these organizations, that are running the government in many agencies."
"Who's in the White House or 10 Downing Street isn't a big factor for us," he added.
The company co-founded by billionaire Peter Thiel opened on the New York Stock Exchange at $10 per share through a direct listing rather than an initial public offering. It closed the day at $9.50.
The direct listing process helps companies that want to avoid a lock-up period for existing shareholders, which Glazer said was one reason for going that route.
"Number one, the company was in a strong position on our balance sheet," he said. "In addition to that, we wanted to give our stockholders and our employees, many of who have been here a really long time, the ability to sell on day one, so that's really why we took the direct listing route."
However, CNBC reported after the debut that Palantir employees and alumni struggled to sell their shares due to a problem with the platform provided by Morgan Stanley.
This is just one of several dramatic developments that have surrounded the listing.
In one version of the filing, which was revised several times, CEO Alexander Karp used the opportunity to publicly break with Silicon Valley, where the company has long been based. This is also where the company announced that it was moving its headquarters to Denver.
“Our company was founded in Silicon Valley,” Karp wrote. “But we seem to share fewer and fewer of the technology sector’s values and commitments.”
The filing also suggested that Palantir would be diversifying its business with more commercial clients, as opposed to the government agencies that have, for good or bad, made its reputation.
Glazer said the reality behind Palantir's reputation has always been more complicated.
"Revenue in 2019 was roughly 50-50 between the commercial and government segment," he said. "A lot of people assume that our government business has always really been this massive thing when really the commercial business has been a significant part of our business for a while now."
The CFO was also confident that the company was finally also headed for profitability after 17 years in business.
"When you look at our current customer base, we have roughly six out of the Fortune 100 and 21 out of the Global 300," he said. "So there's a really big greenfield ahead of us in terms of customers."