Smart speaker company Sonos Inc (NASDAQ: SONO) stock jumped over 30% after its initial public offering (IPO) on Thursday. Shares opened at USD 16, 7% higher than its USD 15 starting selling price, and rose as high as USD 22 during early Friday trading. It had a closing price on Thursday of USD 19.91 giving the Company an implied market valuation of about USD 1.95 Billion.
Sonos sells home high-end speakers for music fans as the market shifts toward smart assistants made by Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) and Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOGL). The Company introduced the Sonos One, a voice enabled speaker, in late 2017.
Although it faces competition in Apple, Amazon and Google, as can also play music from their streaming services, Chief Executive Officer, Patrick Spence, said, “Nobody thought we could put all the competitive streaming services on one platform. I see no reason that those partners won’t continue to want to put their services on really the best multi-room home system.”
The Company however showed a flaw in its business model when its initial SEC filing revealed that it is subject to Amazon’s control on what it decides to do with its Alexa voice recognition service. Sonos expects to incorporate Google’s Assistant to its products as well, according to CNBC.
Although hardware companies and IPOs have performed poorly in the market recently, Sonos believes it is different due to its ability to last. Sonos’ Vice President of Finance, Mike Groeninger, said, “People are buying commodity tech that needs to be replaced, but we’re differentiated because our product persists.” Groeninger also said 27% of households own four or more products and that 61% of its households have registered more than one device.
Sonos looks to grow with more direct customer relationships and geographic expansion. Five countries account for 80% of Sonos’ revenue but the Company plans to enter Japan later this year.