Since early this year, Spotify has been dropping hints that it may go public in the near future -- namely, obtaining a $200 million credit line, posting a job listing for an "External Reporting Specialist," and acquiring music intelligence platform the Echo Nest. Now, the company is holding practice earnings calls, Quartz is reporting.
The publication's sources say this is the clearest signal yet that Spotify is seeking an IPO. These same sources tell Quartz that as recently as early May, the streaming service held a discussion of its first quarterly earnings with banks including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and Deutsche Bank -- the same group from which Spotify obtained its credit line in March.
Companies about to obtain an IPO often stage such calls to field questions from analysts as a way to practice tough questions likely to arise from investors, Quartz's sources add. Facebook went so far as to write scripts for its practice earnings calls before the social networking hub went public in 2012, according to the Wall Street Journal.
In an interview with Billboard earlier this year, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek stressed that pursuing an IPO was not at his company's top priority at that moment. "We’re not focusing on an IPO and I’ve said that publicly many times," he said. "It’s not something I’m spending a lot of time thinking about. Of course at some point our investors want to get their money back -- and we’ll figure that out. But there’s no rush in that and no one is forcing us."