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undergroundnewsroom.com April 26, 2018


Spotify IPO: Swiss flag snafu marks first day of trading

04 April 2018, 01:15 | Clyde Nash

Welcome to the NYSE, SPOT! Music streamer Spotify tunes up for its first day of trading

Microsoft Senior VP of Entertainment Music & Gaming Jason Rutherford during a media presentation in Redmond WA. March 30th 2018

PARIS, FRANCE - JANUARY 06: In this photo illustration, the logo of the Swedish music streaming service Spotify is displayed on the screen of an iPhone on January 06, 2017 in Paris, France. It generated about $5 billion in revenue a year ago, up more than 40 percent from 2016, and a $1.5 billion net loss compared to about $664 million in 2016. It also means Spotify will list on the NYSE without underwriters, without a set price, without a set level of supply of shares, and without a lock-up on existing investors.

Spotify will also not be selling any new company shares.

It now has 71 million so-called premium subscribers, including users who have given the company a credit card number for a free trial.

In an interview with CBS This Morning, Ek said that while he would look at the stock price when it opened, he felt the company is only in the "second inning", emphasizing his focus on the long term. The company set a reference price of $132 ahead of the debut.

Spotify has positioned itself as a key contributor to the reversal of the music industry's decline, by convincing millions of people to pay for an on-demand music subscription service. Spotify is the biggest company to ever go public via direct listing, and the first on the NYSE.

2012, at the Pre-Grammy Gala & Salute to Industry Icons with Clive Davis honoring Richard Branson, in Beverly Hills, Calif. Spotify stock debuted on the market with a boom, opening at $165.90 in an unusual "direct listing".

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Spotify's opening public price was determined by buy and sell orders collected by the NYSE from broker-dealers.

"It's an untested process", said Matt Kennedy, IPO market strategist for Renaissance Capital LLC, an investment research firm.

"Even with all the buzz that it's going to be a great tech IPO year, they're still few and far between", says James Gellert, CEO of RapidRatings, which rates the financial health of public and private companies.

Listen, this whole direct listing thing is definitely making Wall Street's butthole clench, and the hot-takes will be flying in at least one direction when we figure out what this company is actually worth because this is a fun new exercise in bullshit. Instead, it is selling shares now help by its private investors and although this may save them some money, it ultimately makes the entire process volatile.

While Spotify has some bank advisors, a direct listing allows it to trade on an exchange without all the regulatory hassles and expensive bankers that are the hallmarks of the traditional IPO.

"While this is obviously a big day and I'm very proud of my employees, I really just feel like we're in the early days, not celebrating the end days as so many other companies are doing", Ek said.



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