StubHub files for public trading debut through a direct listing

StubHub files for public trading debut through a direct listing

StubHub Holdings, which operates ticket resale stages StubHub and Viagogo, is investigating opening up to the world by a direct listing, as per individuals with knowledge on the matter. The organization, led by Chief Executive Officer Eric H. Cook, secretly filed paperwork with the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission and could seek after a direct posting when this year, individuals said. An exchange might esteem StubHub at more than $13 billion, and the firm is working with advisers including JPMorgan Chase and Co. also Goldman Sachs Group Inc. on the possible posting, some of individuals said.

In 2021, companies including Coinbase Global Inc., Roblox Corp., Amplitude Inc. and Warby Parker Inc. leaned on direct listings as a method for going public. In a direct listing, companies don’t issue new shares as in a traditional IPO, and its investors don’t have to wait for a lockup period to sell stock.

StubHub and Goldman representatives didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment. A JPMorgan spokesperson declined to comment.

Viagogo in 2019 agreed to acquire StubHub from EBay Inc. for $4.05 billion, fulfilling a longtime goal for Baker, who founded both companies. The combined company counts Madrone Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, Declaration Capital and WestCap Management among its investors. It has about $2.5 billion in outstanding debt, according to data compiled by Bloomberg and Moody’s Investors Service.

A direct listing of StubHub would follow the public markets debut of rival Vivid Seats Inc., which merged with a special purpose acquisition company led by Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly.

Moody’s in July changed its outlook on the company’s debt to positive, citing a faster-than-expected increase in scheduled live events, especially in the U.S. The ratings firm said at the time that it expects StubHub revenue to approach pre-pandemic levels in 2022, and that it has leading market positions in most regions including North America. To be sure, Moody’s projections were made before the Omicron variant began to spread, and it warned that a new variant could delay the company’s full recovery.

Another ticketing platform, SeatGeek, has agreed to merge with Billy Beane’s SPAC, RedBall Acquisition Corp.

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