Roblox stock surges at start of trading

Roblox Corp. shares surged more than 60% as the tween-centric gaming platform began trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday…

Roblox RBLX, 56.11% shares shot above $74, and kept climbing, for a gain of more than 60% right out of the gate as the stock began trading right after 1:30 p.m. Eastern time. The stock’s reference price was $45 a share set by the NYSE late Tuesday. At last check, shares were up 63% at $74 for a market cap of about $39 billion.

Sidestepping the initial public offering route, Roblox decided to go public through a direct listing, which differs from an IPO in that shares are not backed by underwriters.

In a direct listing, current stakeholders convert their ownership into stock based on trading prices in private markets. In its latest filing, Roblox said nearly 199 million Class A shares had been registered for resale, for a total of about 388.2 million available shares. The public debut of Roblox has been anticipated since word of an IPO began circulating in October.

The company pivoted to plans for a direct listing from a planned IPO back in January after getting a fresh venture-capital infusion of $520 million that valued the company at $29.5 billion.

Roblox reported revenue of…

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