With global content deal with T-Series, Spotify inches one step closer to India launch
A music catalogue of over 160,000 songs – including Bollywood music, regional soundtracks and songs from independent albums and artists – will be available on Spotify.
Spotify, the world’s largest music streaming service, has been prepping for international expansion for some time now with an eye on India’s huge market. Latest reports suggest that the company might have cleared the ground now, inking a deal with India’s largest record label T-Series.
As part of the global content agreement, the Indian film and music company with the most-viewed YouTube channel will be opening up its huge library of Bollywood music to the streaming platform. With 160,000 songs, the music catalogue will also include a wide variety of soundtracks from regional movies as well as independent albums and that of budding artists.
Of the deal, T-Series managing director Bhushan Kumar said in a statement,
“We are bullish about India’s most popular music company tying up with the world’s most popular music streaming service. We are confident that together we will be able to reach new markets and spread the love for Indian music far and wide.”
With this, Spotify moves one step closer to its proposed launch plans in India, a vast and yet unexplored market of 1.3 billion people. Just the sheer market size of the country makes it alluring for the streaming service, which largely operates in three regions of the world at the moment including, North America, Latin America, and Europe. However, Spotify is the world’s largest paid service and it is up for debate as to how much Indians will be willing to shell out for its music services.
An extended free trial could be an answer to this challenge but Spotify still has to deal with competition from popular music apps like Gaana, Saavn, and Wynk among others. If all goes well, the company would enter the India market by the first quarter of 2019, media reports claimed.
“Today’s deal with T-Series significantly strengthens our Indian music catalogue, bringing Bollywood to more than 200 million Spotify users worldwide. Having T-Series on Spotify is hugely significant and shows our commitment towards providing the very best music for our users,” said Paul Smith, Director, Head of International Licensing at Spotify.
Spotify, however, is not the only one eyeing T-Series as a potential partner for expansion. Ecommerce giant Amazon had forged a similar long term content licensing deal with the record label back in 2016, ahead of the launch of its Prime Video services. New releases by T-Series were to be streamed on Amazon’s service within a few weeks of their theatrical release in India as part of the deal.