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Slack Soars 50% on Its Wall Street Debut

Investing.com - Online work messaging software company Slack soared as the company made its Wall Street debut Thursday.

Shares of Slack Technologies (NYSE:WORK) jumped 50% as it began trading on the New York Stock Exchange midday.

Slack chose a direct public offering instead of an IPO, sidestepping investment bank underwriters and selling shares directly to the public.

The NYSE set a reference price of $26 per share Wednesday night, giving the company a value of around $15.7 billion.

It’s one of the few major tech companies to cut out investment bankers and their fees and instead offer a kind of free-for-all. Spotify Technology (NYSE:SPOT) also chose a direct listing.

A direct listing has the risk of creating wild swings in the share price, which could take time to settle.

The software company allows businesses and teams to communicate via group messages and has around 100,000 paying customers, including Ford Motor (NYSE:F) and HSBC (NYSE:HSBC).

Even so, like most tech firms that have gone public recently, Slack has yet to make a profit. Although revenue rose more than 80% to $401 million in the fiscal year ended Jan. 31, 2019, the company registered a loss of $140.7 million.


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