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Spotify Makes An Unconventional Debut

04 April 2018

Ahead of Spotify going public, CEO Daniel Ek on Monday published a blog post celebrating the occasion while also explaining why the company opted to go public via a direct listing as opposed to a traditional IPO.

A reference price has been set at $132 per share, but actual trading prices could vary widely for the Swedish streaming behemoth, depending on the buy and sell orders collected by the stock exchange from broker-dealers.

Spotify's market debut, however, will be unusual. As a comparison, in September, Apple Music claimed 30 million subscribers and Deezer had fewer than 10 million subscribers.

"Investors are right to have some reservations".

Meanwhile, Kim Forrest, portfolio manager at Fort Pitt Capital Group in Pittsburgh, said it was interesting that Spotify's listing wasn't done to raise money for itself.

By comparison, Apple's almost 3-year-old music streaming service has 38 million subscribers.

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Spotify had 4.09 billion Euros in revenue last year (or close to $5 billion), compared to 2.95 billion Euros (about $3.6 billion) the year before.

That represents a premium to smaller rival Pandora Media Inc with an enterprise value to sales ratio of one.

Spotify went public on Tuesday through a so-called direct listing.

Some 27 million shares had changed hands by late afternoon. Under his watch, Stockholm, Sweden-based Spotify has weathered its share of controversies, including tussles with powerhouse artists like Taylor Swift over how much they are paid for their work. Instead of issuing new shares, the company is opening up the already-existing shares that have been owned privately to allow current shareholders to sell their stock to the general public.

"It's a fair market price".

The snafu marked the first day of trading in a highly unusual share sale.

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Spotify, which was founded a decade ago, is the world's largest music streaming service and has more than 71 million subscribers.

But, he said,"Spotify will be the only direct play on subscription music streaming or at least by far the largest".

"Spotify is floating on the stock market at a pretty inauspicious time for the tech industry, which has been rocked by the Facebook data scandal and now potentially faces greater regulation as a result", said Laith Khalaf, senior analyst, at Hargreaves Lansdown.

Spotify is now a publicly traded company.

Spotify is basically trying to recreate the secondary market activity that happened before it went public.

While Ek eschews New York Stock Exchange rituals such as opening bell-ringing and trading floor interviews to tout the stock, the front of the 115-year-old Greek Revival exchange building has been draped in a vast green-and-black Spotify banner.

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Spotify Makes An Unconventional Debut