Spotify is going to buy back up to $1bn of its shares, starting this month. The company pitched the move as one of strength:
“This announcement demonstrates our confidence in Spotify’s business and the growth opportunities we see over the long term,” said chief financial officer Paul Vogel. “We believe this is an attractive use of capital, and based on the strength of our balance sheet, we continue to see ample opportunity to invest and grow our business.”
The company stressed that the buyback will not dislodge its plans to also “prioritise aggressive investments to grow the business”.
Spotify may be confident, but we will see whether Wall Street agrees. The company’s market cap (valuation) peaked at $69.35bn in mid-February this year, but has since lost 40% of its value, ending last week at $41.46bn. That’s important context for the buyback announcement.