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Recode Daily: Meet the man behind the curtain of Spotify’s daring IPO

Plus, Facebook’s Silicon Valley rivals pile on the backlash, hackers breach two legendary New York department stores, and Fortnite is eating the world.

Daniel Ek, founder and CEO of Spotify, speaks onstage during Spotify Investor Day in front of a screen that reads, “Our mission: Unlock the potential of human capability by giving a million creative artists the opportunity to live off their art and billio
Daniel Ek, founder and CEO of Spotify, speaks onstage during Spotify Investor Day at Spring Studios on March 15, 2018 in New York City.
Ilya S. Savenok / Getty Images for Spotify

When Spotify goes public tomorrow, all eyes will be on 35-year-old CEO Daniel Ek, who built the $20 billion global company and helped revive the music industry along the way. But before the bell rings, meet CFO Barry McCarthy, the man behind Spotify’s daring “direct listing” offering on the New York Stock Exchange; he was Netflix’s CFO for eight years. If McCarthy’s unorthodox strategy works, it could pave the way for other tech startups to follow suit; that could potentially cut out Wall Street banks and their clients from a lucrative revenue stream, and would roil the financial services industry. [Theodore Schleifer / Recode]

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Facebook is battling a backlash — and some of the sharpest criticism is coming from Silicon Valley rivals, who join a chorus of lawmakers, regulators, journalists and users on multiple continents. Among those who have stepped forward to speak out against the social media giant: Apple CEO Tim Cook, an Alphabet AI engineer and several former Facebook execs, including founding president Sean Parker. There are a mix of factors behind the barbs, from genuine concern to a desire to keep regulators and lawmakers focused on Facebook and away from their own companies. [Yoree Koh / The Wall Street Journal]

Hackers breached the payment systems of Saks Fifth Avenue and Lord & Taylor department stores, taking five million customer credit card and debit card numbers. The hacking group, known as JokerStash Syndicate or Fin7, claims to have been releasing the numbers for sale on the “dark web” since May 2017. It’s the latest in a series of intrusions that have exposed security gaps in corporate networks and compromised consumer data. [Robert McMillan and Suzanne Kapner / The Wall Street Journal]

Fortnite is eating the world. In case it hasn’t taken over your office or dorm yet, here’s a quick explainer of the free online game that recently hit a record of 3.4 million people playing concurrently. [Aja Romano / Vox]

Snapchat leaned into its bitter rivalry with Facebook yesterday — April Fools’ Day — with a prank photo filter that poked Facebook in the eye for its inability to curtail the Russian influence campaign on its site. And here’s a grab-bag of yesterday’s best (and lamest) tech-company pranks — Elon Musk joked on Twitter than Tesla has gone “so bankrupt you can’t believe it.” [Theodore Schleifer / Recode]

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