June 18, 2020 / 10:48 PM / 2 months ago

Japanese insurer Sompo investing $500 mln in data analytics firm Palantir

(Reuters) - Palantir Technologies Inc on Thursday said that Japanese insurance holding company Sompo Holdings Inc (8630.T)  is investing $500 million in the Silicon Valley data analytics company, whose clients range from global banks to the U.S. government and the Central Intelligence Agency.

The large investment from Sompo comes as Palantir has seen an uptick in demand for its products that help companies and governments manage the COVID-19 pandemic with data. The company declined to talk about Palantir’s latest valuation or its plans to go public.

Reuters reported last week that Palantir is aiming to file confidentially with U.S. regulators for an initial public offering in the coming weeks, citing sources.

Palantir was valued at around $20 billion in its last fundraising round in 2015. In the private market, its shares have been trading in recent weeks at a valuation of between $10 billion and $14 billion, according to market sources.

Late last year, Palantir also launched a 50-50 joint venture with Sompo called Palantir Technologies Japan K.K. to service the Japanese government as well as commercial clients. And earlier this month another Japanese tech company, Fujitsu Limited, invested $50 million into Palantir in the United States. Both Sompo and Fujitsu are also customers of Palantir.

Co-founded in 2004 by billionaire and well-known tech investor Peter Thiel, the data analytics company has been involved in some of the U.S. government’s most politically sensitive projects, from identifying terrorists to the tracking of illegal immigrants. The company’s technology aided the U.S. government’s successful search for Osama bin Laden, according to multiple media reports.

Reporting by Jane Lanhee Lee; editing by Jonathan Oatis

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