Roblox, the platform that has helped users construct their own lego-like games, may be another company taking the build-your-own ipo route to the stock market.

Reuters reports the silicon valley company may opt for a direct listing early next year that could double its recent $4bn valuation, although it will weigh market conditions at the time.

Asana and palantir this week followed slack and spotify in pursuing direct listings, which give executives more control through selling their stock on the open market, rather than involving investment banks as underwriters and bookrunners, and allotting shares mainly to institutional investors.

We felt the price discovery was much better and the cost of capital was lower, said dustin moskovitz, asana chief executive, in our analysis of the trend (also check out miles kruppas profile of the former facebook cto, the philanthropist conquering silicon valley and richard waters' profile of palantir's chief alex karp).

We also look at the rising role of spacs (special purpose acquisition companies) in ipos. skillz, which turns games into skill-based cash reward competitions, is planning to go public through a spac at a $3.5bn valuation.

And to put a bunny tail on it, playboy enterprises chief executive ben kohn said yesterday he had chosen to go public through a spac because of its efficiency versus a traditional initial public offering.

Column chart of proceeds raised in special purpose acquisition companies ($bn) showing us spacs zoom to record in banner year

1. fitbits wearable rivals objectour brussels bureau reports rival makers of wearable technology are ramping up their opposition to googles $2.1bn acquisition of fitness-tracking company fitbit, arguing to the eu that it still poses a threat to competition and privacy, with recent concessions not going far enough.

2. ecb floats digital euro ideathe european central bank has started a six-month public consultation on the idea of a digital euro, as it tries to stay ahead of the rapidly changing world of digital currencies and payments. this means making sure the euro is fit for the digital age. we should be prepared to issue a digital euro, should the need arise, said christine lagarde, ecb president.

3. ants alipay takes more creditant groups alipay credit business is so huge that it now issues about one-tenth of all of chinas non-mortgage consumer loans. a number of customers have told the financial times they feel its app is designed so that people take out loans, sometimes unwittingly.

Ants growing share of revenue from lending (credittech)

4. london ipo make benefit glorious kazakh fintechthere is a new borat coming on amazon prime on october 23, followed by another significant event in november, with kaspi expected to become the first kazakh finance group to list in london since 2007, after abandoning a previous ipo attempt.in other central asian news, alphaville has been looking at the azerbaijan armed forces social media campaign.

5. amazons covid and streaming ratesamazon says close to 20,000 of its 1.4m workforce have tested positive for coronavirus or are presumed to have had covid-19, 42 per cent lower than the expected infection rate calculated based on the general population. the ecommerce company has also teamed up with universal music and warner music to remaster thousands of popular streaming tracks to better-than-cd audio quality, as the music industry tries to lure listeners to pricier subscriptions. richard waters latest column says its recent product launch shows surveillance is now almost part of the amazon brand, for better or worse.

Microsoft has introduced its most affordable surface laptop, the $549 go. it is smaller and lighter than other models, with a 12.4in touchscreen display, fingerprint sign-in, 10th-generation intel quad-core processor, hd webcam, and claims all-day battery life. the company also announced updates to the higher end surface pro x and introduced a range of new accessories. the new devices go on sale on october 13.