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Wednesday, March 15, 2000 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Loudeye doubles IPO price to $16, raises $72 million

Seattle Times business staff

Increasing demand for stock of streaming-media software makers helped Loudeye Technologies nearly double the price of its initial public offering (IPO).

The price of the shares of the Seattle-based company, which are to begin trading publicly today, was bumped up to $16 a share yesterday from the initial price-target range of $8 to $10.

The stock will trade under the ticker symbol LOUD on Nasdaq.

The sale of 4.5 million shares pulled in $72 million for Loudeye. It will use the proceeds for working capital and general purposes. About 34.6 million Loudeye shares are outstanding after the offering.

Loudeye Chief Executive Martin Tobias, a former Microsoft developer who started the company in 1997, owns about 10.6 million shares. Kirkland-based Olympic Venture Partners has a 12.6 percent stake in the company.

Loudeye's applications jazz up Web sites with audio and video. Its software, bought by online business operators averse to coding themselves, automates the transfer of audio and video files onto Web sites. It uses major formats for streaming audio and video, such as RealNetworks' Real Player, Microsoft's Windows Media Player and Apple's QuickTime.

In 1999, the company, with 210 employees, lost $10.9 million on revenue of $2.6 million. Last month, Akamai Technologies, a Cambridge, Mass.-based streaming-media company, invested $5 million in Loudeye for a co-promotions deal.

Copyright (c) 2000 Seattle Times Company, All Rights Reserved.

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