Roblox Corp. Stock Goes Public With A Direct Listing, Is Valued Higher Than EA, Take-Two
Roblox Corp. is now a publicly traded company with a valuation of over $45 billion.
It's a big day for Roblox Corp., the company behind the hit game Roblox, as the game's owner is now listed on the New York Stock Exchange as part of a business move that marks the next stage in the developer's growth. The Wall Street Journal reports that Roblox ended its first day of trading with a market valuation of over $45 billion dollars. That places the company's valuation higher than EA, which has numerous sports franchises including Madden NFL and FIFA under its umbrella, as well as Take-Two, the parent company of Grand Theft Auto developer Rockstar Games.
Founder David Baszucki was on-hand in New York to ring the opening bell to mark the start of trading for Roblox, which will trade under RBLX. In a statement, Baszucki said, "In 2004, we founded Roblox with the vision of connecting the world. Today, as we celebrate our direct listing on the New York Stock Exchange, we recognize the potential ahead of us: to build the platform where billions of people come together to learn, work, and play."
A direct listing differs from an initial public offering (IPO). With a direct listing, outstanding shares are sold, compared to an IPO where new shares are created and sold to the public.
Roblox Corp. has an estimated value of $30 billion, and this could grow substantially with the direct listing, or it might not. Nothing is guaranteed on the stock market.
A career arc from lawn mowing to game company CEO is something that Dave Baszucki and I have in common. Congrats to Roblox on a fantastic IPO! https://t.co/pvlSrPbHn4— Tim Sweeney (@TimSweeneyEpic) March 10, 2021
What will happen is that Baszucki is expected to become a multi-billionaire due to the direct listing and his 70% ownership of the voting power, according to Fortune. Today's move alone is expected to net him $3 billion. He'll be forgoing any compensation until 2027, and is expected to make charitable contributions as well.
Baszucki is attempting to create a "metaverse" with Roblox, which is exactly what Fortnite studio Epic Games is trying to achieve as well. Baszucki told Fortune that the idea is to build Roblox to become a rich virtual world where players can do whatever they want.
"When we think about what we're doing at Roblox, we're shepherds of the metaverse," he said.
In 2004, we founded @Roblox with the vision of connecting the world. Today, as we celebrate our direct listing on the @NYSE, we recognize the potential ahead of us: to build the platform where billions of people come together to learn, work, and play. #RobloxIPO— David Baszucki (@DavidBaszucki) March 10, 2021
Roblox made waves recently when it partnered with "Old Town Road" singer Lil Nas X for an in-game concert where the singer debuted a new single. More than 30 million people tuned in to watch the larger-than-life virtual concert.