The Pandora-Elevation Deal that Never Closed and a Mid-2011 IPO?


Back in August we reported that Elevation Partners had signed a letter of intent to buy secondary shares in Pandora, the long-suffering, now-hot online radio station. I wondered what ever happened to that deal, so I started digging. As it turned out, shares were sold but Elevation didn’t get them.

Here’s what we’ve been able to piece together, from several sources on different sides of the negotiating table. Many of Pandora’s founders and executives had been reticent to do any sort of partial liquidation. For one thing, the company has raised so much funding even the founders didn’t own Mark-Zuckerberg-like-equity in the company. And Pandora had gone through so many near deaths trying to stay afloat between the Scylla (the RIAA) and Charybdis (Congress), suffering through layoffs and months of foregone paychecks. Like people who lived through the Great Depression and insist on rinsing and reusing paper towels, Pandora has been careful to put all its venture capital towards securing the business, not lining the founders’ pockets.

via The Pandora-Elevation Deal that Never Closed and a Mid-2011 IPO?.

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