Wednesday 12 December 2018

Streaming giant Spotify nears float after filing listing documents


Spotify (Lauren Hurley/PA)
Spotify (Lauren Hurley/PA) Business Desk

Spotify is hoping to attract a new crowd of fans on Wall Street as its competition with Apple heats up.

The music streaming service filed for a direct listing of its shares, laying out financial data for the first time that cheered some analysts.

However, the development led others to question how it could turn a profit from its growing subscriber base.

Spotify, which wants to trade as SPOT on the New York Stock Exchange, is taking an unusual path to the US public markets.

Its direct listing will let investors and employees sell shares without the company raising new capital or hiring a Wall Street bank or broker to underwrite the offering.

Because the company will not issue any new shares, it did not specify a listing price.

Spotify, launched in 2008 and available in more than 60 countries, is the biggest music streaming company in the world.

It counts services from Apple Inc, Inc and Alphabet Inc's Google as its main rivals.

Spotify took its first steps toward the IPO in a confidential filing a few weeks ago, but the documents were not released until Wednesday.

The numbers revealed Spotify’s music-streaming service boasts 71 million subscribers, nearly twice as many as Apple’s rival service.

But Spotify is still not profitable. The Luxembourg-based company lost €1.2bn last year.

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