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Liesl Nielsen,

Utah’s newest tech unicorn is going public

By Liesl Nielsen, | Posted - Apr. 15, 2019 at 3:34 p.m.

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SALT LAKE CITY — Utah’s newest tech unicorn may not be able to call itself that for long.

In corporate culture, “unicorns” are what techies and investors have started calling private startup companies valued at $1 billion or more. Salt Lake-based Health Catalyst earned that distinction in early February after a $100 million funding round.

The health tech company recently began the process to go public, however, after submitting its draft registration statement to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Once the company officially goes public, it will no longer be a “unicorn.”

The company will also join an exclusive list of other former Utah unicorns that jumped into the public market just last year.

Tech companies Pluralsight and Domo went public in May and June, leaving Utah’s lone official unicorn after Qualtrics was acquired by SAP for a record $8 billion. Health Catalyst joined the list after its latest funding round brought the company to over $370 million total funding.

The 11-year-old company was founded by two Intermountain Medical IT employees in 2008 but really took off in 2011. Health Catalyst’s software essentially allows healthcare professionals to quickly aggregate and analyze data to better understand their patients and their health.

The health care industry has just recently started undergoing a digital revolution, Health Catalyst CEO Dan Burton told in February. Up until a few years ago, most patient data was all on paper. It’s much harder to analyze data when it’s on paper, he said.

With digitized data, a doctor can have a better idea of the patient’s medical history and see trends or patterns they might not have been able to before.

“I think the next 10 or 15 years will be all about harnessing that valuable data to pinpoint thousands of opportunities for clinical, financial and operational improvement,” Burton said in February. “We have a mission that is broad and will take decades to fulfill … and, my goodness, we’re just barely scratching the surface."

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