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Pandora’s Sales More Than Double; June IPO Seen as Likely

Pandora CEO Tim Westergren
Tim Westergren, founder and chief strategy officer of Pandora Media Inc., speaks during the Interactive Advertising Bureau MIXX 2010 conference and expo during Advertising Week in New York on Sept. 28, 2010. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Pandora Media Inc., the Internet-music company preparing for an initial public offering, said revenue more than doubled last quarter and its user base topped 90 million, solidifying its lead in streaming radio.

Sales rose to $51 million in the three months ended April 30, from $21.6 million a year earlier, the Oakland, California-based company said today in a regulatory filing. The company said it expects to complete the share sale by the end of June.

Pandora aims to build investor interest for its planned $100 million IPO, which would follow the public market debuts of other popular Internet startups. Shares of professional-networking site LinkedIn Corp. and Russian search engine Yandex NV both surged after initial offerings this month. Social-media game developer Zynga Inc. may file for an IPO by the end of June, a person familiar with the matter said this week.

Pandora plans to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol P. JPMorgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley and Citigroup Inc. will serve as the underwriters.

Founded in 2000 by Tim Westergren under the name Savage Beast, Pandora made 86 percent of its sales from advertisements that target users based on age, gender, home ZIP code and musical taste. Ads support the free radio service, though the company also sells subscriptions to users who prefer to listen without advertising.

Spending on marketing and acquiring the rights to songs widened Pandora’s losses. The net loss attributable to common shareholders in the quarter ended April 30 was $9.1 million, or 61 cents a share, compared with $4.97 million, or 64 cents, a year earlier.

Credit Line

The company also borrowed $30 million through a credit line from JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley this month, according to today’s filing.

Pandora’s ad revenue surged over the past two years as its music application became one of the most popular on Apple Inc.’s iPhone and Google Inc.’s Android devices. Sales more than doubled to $137.8 million in fiscal 2011.

Pandora is facing increased competition from a variety of rivals, including Apple itself. That company reached agreements with three major record labels to let users of its music service access their song collections from handheld devices, people with knowledge of the deals said last week.

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