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Cloudera shares close more than 20% higher on Day 1

Cloudera shares bounced 20.7 percent in their public debut on Friday.

The stock started trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Friday under the ticker "CLDR." Shares rose to $18 a share as the stock opened around 10.:45 a.m. ET, and closed at $18.10 a share.

The company priced its IPO at $15 a share, above the expected range of $12 to $14 a share. But it's significantly less than the $30.92 a share that Intel paid for the stock in 2014, according to regulatory documents.

Chief executive Tom Reilly told CNBC that because Intel is working with Cloudera to design data analytics software and hardware that works together, the deal with Intel was structured differently in the private market.

Tom Reilly, chief executive officer of Cloudera Inc.
Matthew Busch | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Tom Reilly, chief executive officer of Cloudera Inc.

"Intel is an amazing partner of ours .... Intel and us have a long journey ahead. They are supportive of this IPO. They are investors with us, [but] they are different than a financial investor," Reilly told CNBC's "Squawk Alley" on Friday. "All our financial investors are very happy with their returns.... we're very excited about our valuation."

The 15 million share IPO will raise $225 million, more than the $200 million the company had initially filed to raise.

Founded by alumni from Oracle, Yahoo, Facebook and Google, Cloudera specializes in data science technology, using one of software developers' most beloved technology frameworks, called Hadoop.

"Everything is connected — pretty much everything and everyone," Reilly said. "Think of smart cars, smart homes, smart watches .... that creates a vast amount of data. Ninety percent of the world's data in 2020 doesn't exist today. And our platform is designed to capture that."

While its revenue grew to $261.0 million in the year ending Jan. 31, up from $166.0 million a year ago, Cloudera is losing money. It posted a loss of $187.32 million last year, narrower than the $203.14 million from a year ago. Having incurred net losses since its founding in 2008, Cloudera said in regulatory filings it does not intend to pay any cash dividends on common stock in the foreseeable future.

"With the proceeds from the IPO, this gives us even greater flexibility to look long-term — look at this big market — and make sure that we remain the market leader by making the right investments, having the right partnerships," Reilly said.

The company faces what it calls "intense competition," both from enterprise technology companies like IBM and Oracle, and from cloud providers like Amazon and Microsoft that are bolstering their business intelligence offerings. Cloudera rival Hortonworks, which priced its IPO at $16 a share in 2014, has since cratered and traded at less than $11 a share on Friday.

But Reilly said that the growth in cloud is a tailwind for Cloudera, thanks to its partnerships with major providers like Amazon, Microsoft and Google.

"Some of our biggest investments are developing new capabilities in the cloud. And some of our fastest-growing part of the business is adoption of our technology in the cloud," Reilly said.

Cloudera, a CNBC Disruptor 50 company, said the company intends to continue to expand internationally after the IPO, and will use the proceeds for activities like sales and marketing, research and product development. The start-up was backed by venture capitalists like Greylock and Accel, and the IPO was underwritten by banks including Morgan Stanley, JPMogan, and Allen& Company.