Stingray Digital looks to the future with optimism as a publicly traded company

MONTREAL – Shares of Stingray Digital Group jumped 16 per cent on Wednesday in its first day as a publicly traded company.

The Canadian digital music distributor closed $1 above its listing price of $6.25 on the Toronto Stock Exchange and was the most traded stock of the day, with a volume of 8.5 million shares.

The movement pushed the stock to $7.25 a share, well above the value set in its $140-million initial public offering.

Stingray (TSX:RAY.A), whose properties include Galaxie, Concert TV and Karaoke Channel, employs 225 people worldwide and distributes music and video in 111 countries to pay-TV subscribers and businesses.

It will receive about $83 million before expenses from the sale of about 13.3 million shares from its treasury. The rest of the $140 million from the IPO will go to Stingray shareholders who are selling some of their stock.

Stingray’s president and major shareholder, Eric Boyko, says the company is looking for acquisitions in the United States, Latin America and Asia to bolster growth.

“In the States, for example, there is a (potential) of 102 million clients,” he said. “We want to be aggressive there.”

The company has already been involved in 18 deals since being founded in 2007. It says it has 110 million paying customers and that nearly 180 million people have access to its services.

“We are going to remain disciplined,” said Mathieu Peloquin, the company’s vice-president, marketing and communications. “We made five acquisitions last year and we want to maintain that rhythm.”

Peloquin said future expansion plans will remain squarely on its primary focus, the music business.

For the year ended last March 31, Stingray posted a net profit of $6.6 million on revenue of $71 million.

Boyko did not reveal Stingray’s financial targets, stating only that the company’s stability should inspire confidence among investors and shareholders.

“We have long-term contracts and our sales are foreseeable,” he noted. “The next five years are stable. For example, in Canada, the next contract up for renewal is only in 2020.”