Spotify announces original podcasts from India, looks to tap into cricket and lifestyle craze
Spotify is upping its focus on Indian content with a first-of-its-kind investment in original programming from the country.
The Sweden-based audio-streaming service has roped in a bunch of desi creators to develop three "platform-exclusive podcasts" that start streaming in December.
The Spotify Original content from India will tap into the country's top obsessions - cricket, lifestyle, and pop culture.
The line-up includes 22 Yarns with Gaurav Kapur (a cricket stories podcast), Bhaskar Bose (a fiction thriller), and Love Aaj Kal (a podcast on relationship advice).
Interestingly, past seasons of Love Aaj Kal hosted by social media influencers Aastha Atray and Ankit Vengurlekar had streamed on JioSaavn.
Spotify will not only be investing in content development, but will also roll out better discovery, data, and monetisation tools for creators.
Amarjit Singh Batra, Managing Director, Spotify India
Amarjit Singh Batra, Managing Director - India, Spotify, said in a statement,
"Just over a year ago, we announced Spotify for Podcasters, which provides listener insights to all creators on our platform. Today, we have 1,40,000 registered creators across the world and the data for a few of these shows that India features in their top streamed markets."
The number of podcasts on the platform has grown 5X in a little more than a year. Globally, there are about 5,00,000 podcast titles on Spotify today, with "exponential growth" recorded in hours streamed, the company stated.
Its monthly active users increased by 30 percent year-on-year to reach 248 million, while Spotify Premium subscribers grew 31 percent to cross 113 million at the end of Q3 2019, Spotify revealed.
It counts more than two million users in India in less than a year of launch, and believes that "localisation is an important element" of its strategy.
“Storytelling is intrinsic to India, and almost nostalgic because most of us have grown on stories that our grandparents and parents told us. Spotify wants to re-establish that listening culture here, especially as users seek more screen-free moments."
In a prior interaction with YourStory, the Spotify India MD had also said, "In more mature markets, we are investing in the creation of original podcast content through our in-house unit Spotify Studios. India is still young when it comes to non-music audio content, but given the current consumption trends, the country could play a big part in this global opportunity in the coming years."
(Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta)