Spotify CEO Daniel Ek

Spotify has more than 50 million paying subscribers to its on-demand music streaming service.

At a time when media companies that rely on advertising for most of their revenue are getting beat up, Spotify has an attractive business.

In that light, it's not surprising that, according to CNBC's David Faber, Spotify's banks are looking at offering the company's shares to the public either late this year or in early 2018. The direct listing reportedly carries a valuation of $13 billion.

Spotify declined to comment on the report, though a company spokesman confirmed that it has hired Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Allen & Co. as strategic advisers. CNBC reported the three banks were working on the listing.

Rumors that Spotify might eschew a traditional initial public offering in favor of a direct listing first surfaced last month. A direct listing would allow the company's original investors as well as founders such as CEO Daniel Ek and some stockholding employees to directly sell their stakes to the public. Such a move would cede the discovery of the opening price to market forces rather than allowing bankers and institutional investors to set an opening price.

Spotify emerged from a crowded group of music streaming platforms that began operating roughly 10 years ago. Yet rather than focusing on a curated-radio model supported by advertising, Spotify bet early on that listeners would pay for the chance to create their own playlists, choosing which songs they'd want to hear.

Under Swedish-born Ek, Spotify grew slowly, concentrating on smaller European markets before taking the service to the U.K., and then to the U.S. By taking an early lead in on-demand streaming, Spotify was able to secure an established place in the business despite the entrance in recent years of much-larger technology companies such as Apple (AAPL - Get Report) and Amazon (AMZN - Get Report) .

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