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Capital Markets

Direct listings: the future according to Goldman Sachs

A new approach to going public has so far been tested by only two firms, but the people who did those deals see them as the start of something bigger.

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A trader passes by screens showing Spotify on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange

This may be a big call after only two deals, but direct listings could be the hot topic in equity capital markets in 2020. Some of those closest to the newly emerging technique reckon there will be at least five next year. But the number is not the point.

Much more important is the way in which direct listings are set to reshape how a new generation of bigger private companies accesses public capital markets – and the ways in which such deals might even change the traditional IPO.

Regulators at the SEC have already proved themselves flexible when it came to the first deals.


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