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Spotify Calms Investors, Saying Listing Plans Still an Option

  • Company reacts to Swedish radio interview Martin Lorentzon
  • Co-founder and Deputy Chairman had said IPO reports ‘false’

Spotify Ltd. moved quickly to assure investors that plans to go public are still on track for the music streaming service after co-founder and board member Martin Lorentzon told Swedish radio that reports of an impending New York Stock Exchange listing were false.

Lorentzon said the company didn’t “need any money” and that it is “not looking for more and any IPO isn’t on the agenda”. He said Spotify is still focusing on growth over profitability.

"Martin is our co-founder and a board member, but not a spokesman for the company,” Spotify said in an emailed statement Friday. A public listing "remains an option for us,” the company said, adding it hasn’t confirmed any "definitive" plans.

Last month, Spotify said it has taken a step toward going public, hiring banks to help it list in New York. The Swedish streaming service contracted Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs Group and Allen & Co. to advise on the process, according to spokeswoman Alison Bonny.

Spotify is mulling whether to do a direct listing rather than a more traditional public offering, a person familiar with the plans has said, although a final decision hasn’t been made. Under this process, the company wouldn’t sell new shares to raise money. Instead it will just make existing shares available to trade, allowing current investors to cash out. 

With 50 million paying subscribers, Spotify is the world’s largest music streaming service. Helmed by Chief Executive Officer and co-founder Daniel Ek, the company has maintained its leadership even as larger technology companies including Apple Inc., Amazon.com Inc. and Google have entered the market. The unprofitable company has raised more than $1.5 billion since it was founded more than a decade ago.

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