Box, an online storage service that aims to become an essential part of the cloud computing-based business, on Monday released financial data before a public offering.
Many more cloud businesses, for both business and consumers, are expected to follow this year.
Box, based in Los Altos, Calif., said in an S1 document filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it planned to raise up to $250 million in its initial public offering.
In a recent round of private funding, Box was valued at $2 billion, but would most likely be worth several times that after the I.P.O.
Box’s service — the ability to store and share files from both personal computers and mobile devices like smartphones and tablets — is a hot area in technology for businesses because it makes collaboration and information-sharing easier from any location.
Besides Box, companies like Dropbox, Google, Amazon and Microsoft are all in the online storage business.
In its filing, Box, quoting the research firm IDC, said digital information was expected to grow 300-fold from 2005 to 2020, increasing demand for storage and content management businesses.
Founded in 2005, the company reported revenue of $124.2 million in the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, and had losses of $168.6 million. A year earlier, the company had revenue of $58.8 million, and losses of $112.6 million. Box also said it had 34,000 companies that paid to use the platform, and more than 25 million individuals who had accessed data, documents, images and other material in its storage service.
Aaron Levie, Box’s co-founder and chief executive, has quickly become a well-known figure in Silicon Valley, as much for his high-energy manner, flamboyant sneakers and searing wit on Twitter as for his business acumen. The 29-year-old Seattle native, however, has shown an ability to get traditional business in his corner.
In 2012, Box received a big infusion of capital from General Atlantic, an East Coast private equity firm. Gary Reiner, a General Atlantic partner who is a former chief information officer at General Electric and a member of Hewlett-Packard’s board, joined the board of Box.
In its filing Monday, Box said 40 percent of the Fortune 500 were paying customers.
Mr. Levie appears to be moving Box from a simple repository of information into a more dynamic service, in which content can be created, modified and analyzed. Last summer, the company purchased Crocodoc, a company that makes it possible to view lots of different presentations on any device.
At a meeting in the fall, Mr. Levie showed how a marketer could change the look and content of a brochure or manual while inside Box, then send it along.
As data storage moves from a repository of information to a place where work is being created and discussed, systems like Box become more valuable to business. Apparently in response to this trend, last year Google moved its word-processing and spreadsheet software into a part of Google Drive, its storage service.
The next likely move, both for Google and others, is to create means to analyze what work is being created within a company, and how information is moving across corporate networks. This could be useful both for hiring and planning, and to see what areas of business are experiencing the most activity. If that is to be the competition, Box will need a lot of money to compete in things like investing in computer science as well as visualization and design.