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Activist investor ValueAct takes stake in Spotify

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Feb 10 (Reuters) – ValueAct Capital Management has taken a stake in Spotify Technology SA (SPOT.N), at a time when the audio streaming company is looking to cut costs.

“We welcome ValueAct as an investor in Spotify,” a spokesperson for the Swedish company said on Friday, without disclosing further details on the investment.

Spotify’s shares rose 3.5% to $125.

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ValueAct Chief Executive Mason Morfit disclosed the investment during a presentation at a Columbia University event in New York on Friday, according to Bloomberg News, which first reported the stake.

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ValueAct, which declined to comment, distinguishes itself from other activist investors by preferring to stay behind the scenes and rarely presents its investment ideas publicly.

It has been investing more frequently in Japan in recent years, but has also made investments in U.S. companies including Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O) and Citigroup Inc (C.N).

Meanwhile, Spotify has invested heavily in building up its podcast and audiobooks business in 2022, with operating expenses growing at twice the rate of its revenue.

However, a challenging economic environment set the stage for belt tightening, with Spotify Chief Executive Daniel Ek announcing layoffs and an organizational restructuring in January.

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