The pros and cons of Spotify’s reported plans to forgo a traditional IPO in favor of a direct listing

It’s being widely reported that Spotify, the streaming-music service from Sweden, will bypass the typical rigmarole of an initial public offering and instead make its shares tradable through a direct listing on the New York Stock Exchange. It’s an unusual gambit, because it means Spotify couldn’t use going public the way most companies do: as an occasion to raise more money. The company would simply be valued at its most recent private-market valuation (currently $13 billion), and new...

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