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Utah company Skullcandy Inc. goes public

Published: Wednesday, July 20 2011 10:44 p.m. MDT

PARK CITY — The Utah company that has the Generation Y set grooving to the beat as they bound down the slopes, hit the skate park, ride their bikes or just get around town has taken its sweet sounds to Wall Street.

Park City-based Skullcandy Inc., which sells fancy headphones, decorative iPod cases and T-shirts with its skull logo, raised $188.8 million in an expanded initial public offering that priced above expectations.

"We are stoked to reach this important milestone for the company," said Skullcandy president Jeremy Andrus. "It is a testament to the hard work of our team, and we are excited about the future."

The company, which said its brand offerings "symbolize youth and rebellion," sold 9.4 million shares to initial investors for $20 each — even better than its forecast earlier this month that it would offer 8.3 million shares from $17 to $19 each.

"It enabled us to raise capital and — as a publicly-traded company — it opens a lot of doors, especially as we expand internationally," said chief financial officer and general counsel Mitch Edwards. "We have more stature, we have capital to grow and open foreign offices and really opens the door to a new era of international growth for us."

The improved offering signaled strong demand from investors for Skullcandy's stock with more than half of the shares sold by existing stockholders, including company founder Rick Alden, other Skullcandy executives and investment companies.

The IPO could be the first step for Skullcandy to become a major player in the global marketplace, according to a local business executive.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for them to literally go to that upper level," said Salt Lake Chamber president and chief executive officer Lane Beattie. "What it means is that a great Utah company has the ability to make a major step forward."

Skullcandy headphones are sold in electronics, sporting goods and mobile phone stores, as well as mass retailers such as Target and through the company's website.

The company was founded in 2003. Since then, revenue has grown from $9.1 million in 2006 to $160.6 million last year, lifted by the increasing popularity of devices that play music on the go, including mp3 players and mobile phones. But it posted a nearly $10 million loss last year, compared with profit of $12.3 million in 2009.

During the first quarter of this year, revenue grew to $36 million from $21.7 million in the same quarter last year, and Skullcandy posted net income of $1.1 million — up from a loss of $801,000.

Shares will trade on the Nasdaq under the symbol "SKUL."

Email: jlee@desnews.com

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