Music Industry

If you’re dragged into a conversation about Spotify’s debut on the stock market, here are five talking points.

As of this week, Spotify is trading on the stock market and it’s the only thing the industry is talking about. If you should find yourself caught in a conversation on the topic, here are a few talking points that will make it sound you know what you’re talking about.

1. Spotify is unbelievably freakin’ HUGE

To put that into perspective, Spotify is worth more than Universal, Sony and Warner combined. In fact, it may be bigger than the entire music industry. Call it the world’s most valuable music company. It’s also bigger than companies like Hewlett-Packard, General Mills and Yum Brands (Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, KFC, etc.)

2. The major labels made out like bandits

Unless you were plugged into Spotify’s financials, you wouldn’t have known that the major labels had equity positions in Spotify. Sony’s stake is $1.5 billion. You have to wonder how the relationship between Spotify and the majors may change going forward…

3. Spotify shares took a dump on day two, but…

…that was just the expected profit-taking. That included Sony, which sold off some of its Spotify holdings.

4. The NYSE made a stupid mistake.

When a new company debuts on the NYSE, the flag of its nation of origin is flown. In a big oopsie, someone ordered that the Swiss flag be hung, not the Swedish one.

5. Part of the reason this offering was such a success is that Wall Street is worried

Spotify’s IPO/DPO is one of the few huge offerings in sight and the guys in suspenders are concerned. Are the good times nearing an end? The New York Times takes a look. If you’re into reading what financial analysts are thinking, go here.

6. All this money is good for Spotify, but won’t mean much to musicians.

The company is awash in cash, but will any of that impact musicians? Probably not–at least not yet. Here’s one opinion on that. And another. And another.

7. Spotify still has a huge mountain to climb.

Spotify has yet to turn any kind of profit. Its costs are huge. And it’s being hacked on the deep web.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38550 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

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