After a sluggish spring, technology companies braving stock offerings in the public market are finding a warmer reception this month. The biggest test will come later this week, when Slack Technologies is expected to start trading through a direct offering.
Slack’s chat and collaboration platform has become a workplace tool in 600,000 organizations, 95,000 of which are paying customers. The company is expected to be valued between $16 billion and $17 billion when it lists on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker WORK on Thursday. Like Spotify, Slack will list its shares through the unusual route of a direct offering, bypassing the traditional IPO process, which involves hiring a team of investment banks as underwriters.