back to article Want to buy your own piece of the Pi? No 'urgency' says Upton of the listing rumours

Industry talk is continuing to circulate regarding a possible public listing of the UK makers of the diminutive Raspberry Pi computer. Over the weekend, The Telegraph reported that a spring listing could be in the offing, with a valuation of more than £370m. Pi boss, Eben Upton, described the newspaper's article as " …

  1. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Unhappy

    Beginning of the end?

    Considering what seems to happen to just about every other successful business when it goes public, I'm not exactly delighted to see this move.

    1. DomDF

      Re: Beginning of the end?

      Agreed. I wrote an essay of a comment to this end, but the comment form threw up and lost it when I clicked submit.

    2. Def Silver badge

      Re: Beginning of the end?

      But this is what happens when you pull in external investment. At some point in the future investors want to see their money returned with interest, and there only really two realistic ways to do that: Sell the company, or take it public.

      1. Tom 7 Silver badge

        Re: Beginning of the end?

        You can still get your money back - non-voting shares is always an option and I'd be interested in some of those.

    3. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: Beginning of the end?

      OR

      The end of the beginning.

      Whichever it is, it will not end well. The VC's will move in (if Broadcom does not get there first) and rape and pillage everything of worth from the biz before exiting and leaving a load of debt.

      We've all seen it before. A promising business based here, lists and then is fair game for the pirates.

      Sad fact of life and the Gubbermint don't even bother to give out fake biz advice. Other governments would stop this sort of thing in its tracks but ours seems to be too busy stuffing fat brown envelopes of cash in tax havens all over the world.

      A cynical view of things? Yep but probably not too far from the truth in the end.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Beginning of the end?

        "The VC's will move in [...] and rape and pillage everything of worth from the biz before exiting and leaving a load of debt.

        We've all seen it before. A promising business based here, lists and then is fair game for the pirates."

        What else do you expect when the spivs and wide boys in the City's casino banks and similar financial institutions are the ones actually in charge of UK plc and its future? What do they care about anything succeeding or not, as long as they get their cut on the transaction?

        A pox on all their houses.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well we know what's next then...(to keep things topical - MS Edge).

      A Raspberry PI with a 'Buy Now, Pay Later' biometric built right into the silicon.

  2. m4r35n357

    This is why we can't have nice things

    ARM went abroad, and so will Pi.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    While the injection of funds would certainly be welcome to the Foundation in the short term, there's no doubt in my mind it would be the end of RasPi as we have known it.

    Unless the Foundation is reserved a guarantee-of-control., it would take all of five seconds for someone overseas with access to dark money and zero-interest loans to snap up the Trading arm for their IP/Brand, do away with their UK infrastructure and ship manufacturing to the far east, while the ghouls in government cheer it on from their own bolt holes in BVI and the Canaries.

  4. cornetman Silver badge

    I could never see the upside to selling your business to a load of random strangers as a way to grow your company, which is effectively what "going public" is.

    You'd have a ton of money, but you'd have to put up with a load of greedy halfwits trying to asset strip what you spent time, money and love to build.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      It's called retiring.

  5. werdsmith Silver badge

    I've really enjoyed joining in the whole Pi story since the anticipation and waiting in 2011, up to today's evolved Pis, it's been amazing. Getting free Zeros on the magazine cover, going to 4 cores etc. I'm realistic, I know this is the natural lifecycle that businesses go through but I'm sad that it might be lost to corporatism. There is no precedent for anything like this ending well for us end users. That natural lifecycle usually ends in burnout.

    IF this happens, I keep my fingers crossed for a breakaway spin-off company to keep the true spirit of Pi alive.

  6. spireite Silver badge
    Coat

    Big valuation....

    That'll be the cherry on top!

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Big valuation....

      If it's running Windows is it a bilberry?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Share price??

    £3.14, surely...

    1. Andy The Hat Silver badge

      Re: Share price??

      Is 3.14cm the average circumference of a raspberry? Is the raspberry an El Reg officially sanctioned unit?

  8. Howard Sway Silver badge

    Pimania

    I'm guessing a lot of people are sharing the same disappointment I'm feeling reading this, that what was once was promoted as entirely a means of getting cheap computers into the hands of kids and hobbyist tinkerers has apparently morphed into a multimillion pound business concerning itself with growing into markets, that will be flogged off to make the founders super rich, and probably in the next couple of years find itself absorbed in a takeover bid into being just another product line in some existing big company's catalogue.

  9. TimMaher Silver badge
    Childcatcher

    Secondary market

    If they raise the money on Crowdcube or Seedrs or somewhere, they could pretty much guarantee a massive diversification of shareholders.

    Either way, secondary or IPO or whatever, I’m In.

    Just so’s I can vote against the slimy financiers who want to sell it off to a private investment fund who can do a quick asset strip.

    I won’t win but it’s worth the effort.

  10. sean.fr

    Charitable status

    I thought the PI production company has or at least had charitable status which gave it a price advantage over the tax paying competition. Broadcom made a good decision gifting technical support. Lots of chip sales. There were / are other "better" ARM processors in the same price range.

    Knew it was dodgy when they did the True VNC product placement.

    Fortunately there are several PI like boards.

    Like IBM and the PC, they may have greated the market, but it is unclear they can hold the market.

    If they raise prices to maximise profits ...

    Ubuntu on Pi class ARM processor is now supported directly by Ubuntu. There is very little secret sauce to give them an IP edge.

  11. Jason Bloomberg

    But I thought...

    https://www.theregister.com/2021/09/21/raspberry_pis_trading_arm_snags

    "The trading arm of the Raspberry Pi Foundation has received a £33m investment - putting paid to rumours that the company was looking to float on the stock exchange as a means of funding growth."

    Apparently not :)

    1. sean.fr

      Re: But I registered charity

      Raspberry PI foundation UK charity number 1129409 filed an income of 95 million pounds. Way does it need cash?

  12. Ian Johnston Silver badge

    Who cares as long as they make it less crap. They recently released a new version of Raspian ... which doesn't support the official Raspberry Pi camera. Apparently they are thinking about writing a driver for it, some time.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Raspbian Bullseye: camera software changes

      https://www.raspberrypi.com/news/bullseye-camera-system/

      https://www.raspberrypi.com/documentation/accessories/camera.html

      https://forums.raspberrypi.com/viewtopic.php?t=323390

      And doubtless elsewhere

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