Saturday, February 12, 2011

Social Media IPO line-up: On Linkedin's heels, Pandora files S-1. Morgan Stanley lead underwriter (2 for 2)

Link to S-1 filing

Our Mission
Our mission is to enrich people’s lives by enabling them to enjoy music they know and discover music they’ll love, anytime, anywhere. People connect with music on a fundamentally personal and deeply emotional level. Whether it’s a song someone first heard ten years ago or one they’ve just discovered, if they connect with that music on our service, a strong bond is forged at that moment with Pandora. Just as we value music, we also hold a deep respect for those who create it. We celebrate and hold dear the individuals who have chosen to make music, from megastars to talented new and emerging artists.

Who We Are
Pandora is the leader in internet radio in the United States, offering a personalized experience for each of our listeners. We have pioneered a new form of radio – one that uses intrinsic qualities of music to initially create stations and then adapts playlists in real-time based on the individual feedback of each listener. In January 2011, we had over 80 million registered users and we added a new registered user every second on average. We have more than a 50% share of all internet radio listening time among the top 20 stations and networks in the United States, according to a November 2010 report by Ando Media, or Ando, an audience measurement and ads management firm. Since we launched the Pandora service in 2005, our listeners have created over 1.4 billion stations.

The Music Genome Project and our playlist generating algorithms form the technology foundation that enables us to deliver personalized radio to our listeners. These proprietary technologies power our ability to predict listener music preferences and play music content suited to the tastes of each individual listener. The extensive musicological database of the Music Genome Project has been meticulously built by a team of professional musicians and musicologists analyzing up to 480 attributes, or genes, for every song in our vast collection, to capture the fundamental musical properties of each recording. When a listener enters a single song, artist, composer or genre to start a station – a process we call seeding – our complex mathematical algorithms combine the genes cataloged by the Music Genome Project with individual and collective feedback to suggest songs and build personalized playlists. Over the last decade, our music analysts have been analyzing songs, our engineers have been organizing the genome and refining our playlist generating algorithms and, since the launch of our service five years ago, our listeners have been giving us feedback as they use our service. Containing over 800,000 songs from over 80,000 artists, we believe the Music Genome Project is the most comprehensive analysis of music in the world.

Pandora Tomorrow
Our growth has been driven by making the Pandora service a great experience for our listeners, by broadening the availability of our service and by growing ad revenue in ways that work for both our listeners and our advertisers. We are focused on building a successful long-term business and the key elements of our strategy are to:

Enhance Our Service. We believe the better job we do creating a great experience, the more listeners we attract, the more they listen, and the more they help us grow through word-of-mouth. As a result, we intend to continue to innovate and improve the Pandora service.

Develop Innovative Advertising Products. We continue to develop advertising products that are compelling for our advertisers without compromising the music experience for our listeners.

Build Our Ad Sales Force and Support Organization. We are building our sales force to further our penetration of national and local advertisers.

Expand Distribution. We are expanding our reach to new mobile, consumer electronics, and automotive platforms.

Expand to Other Geographies. We believe there is a substantial market for online personalized radio outside of the United States, and our long-term goal is to deliver the Pandora service to listeners globally.

Expand Content Formats. Although music format stations represent 80% of total radio share according to Arbitron, a media and marketing research firm, many radio listeners are drawn to sports, talk, news and other forms of content beyond music. We think there is an opportunity over the long term to offer these types of content in addition to music.


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