It’s time to start the music, it’s time to light the lights, it’s time to get things started, because Spotify just took its biggest stage yet: the New York Stock Exchange. Intent on shaking things up from the start, the music streaming service skipped the bell ringing and initial public offering, and instead launched a direct listing on the public markets today.
Shares in the company trade under the ticker symbol “SPOT” and immediately opened at the reference price of $132, which was set by the NYSE and matched by the buy-and-sell orders phoned in by stock brokers.
We’ll be keeping an eye on the markets to see how things shake out today.
Spotify launched 12 years ago as a free service funded by advertising. It now has some 157 million customers, including 72 million paying subscribers. Despite the impressive numbers, Spotify has never made a profit, which makes it hard for investors to determine the value of the firm. Still, experts predict the market will set a value of $20 billion to $25 billion, which is a bargain after you consider all those times you incognito-streamed Carly Rae Jepsen’s entire catalogue.
Update: CNBC reports that after just 45 minutes, Spotify shares were trading at $160.35, up nearly 22 percent from the reference price. As of Tuesday afternoon SPOT was trading at $165.90 per share, giving it an initial market cap of around $29.55 billion.