Ryktena om ett avtal mellan Spotify och Universal, som MI rapporterade om i veckans nyhetsbrev, bekräftades senare. “Det här partnerskapet bygger på gemensam kärlek till musiken, värdeskapande för artister och på att leverera för fansen”, säger Spotifys vd Daniel Ek i pressmeddelandet.
Avtalets exakta innehåll är ännu inte känt men två centrala punkter uppges var: 1) Spotify har fått ner den procentandel de betalar till Universal. Målet ska ha varit 52%, i det gamla avtalet var det enligt många källor 55%. 2) I fortsättningen kommer tunga album från Universal under de två första veckorna inte att vara tillgängliga för gratisprenumeranter, s k ”windowing”.
Avtalet beskrivs redan av vissa bedömare som ”en milsten” och ett centralt moment för Spotify själva i planeringen för en börsintroduktion senare i år, eller 2018.
Pressmeddelandet från Spotify i sin helhet:
STOCKHOLM AND SANTA MONICA, APRIL 4, 2017 – Spotify, the leading global music streaming service, and Universal Music Group (UMG), the world leader in music-based entertainment, today announced a new, multi-year global license agreement.
Under the agreement, the companies will advance their partnership to ensure that streaming realizes its full transformational potential for artists, labels and fans by delivering a comprehensive range of music experiences, providing more flexibility for new releases, and collaborating on innovative marketing campaigns across Spotify’s platform.
The new agreement will also provide UMG with unprecedented access to data, creating the foundation for new tools for artists and labels to expand, engage and build deeper connections with their fans.
In making the announcement, Daniel Ek, Chairman and CEO of Spotify, said, “This partnership is built on a mutual love of music, creating value for artists and delivering for fans. We will be working together to help break new artists and connect new and established artists with a broadening universe of fans in ways that will wow them both. We know that not every album by every artist should be released the same way, and we’ve worked hard with UMG to develop a new, flexible release policy. Starting today, Universal artists can choose to release new albums on premium only for two weeks, offering subscribers an earlier chance to explore the complete creative work, while the singles are available across Spotify for all our listeners to enjoy. I want to thank Sir Lucian for his leadership in everything we have done so far and in everything that we will do together to deliver on the promise of the new music economy for all the people who make music and all the people who love it.”
Sir Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group, said, “Eight years ago, when streaming was a welcome but small source of revenue, UMG embraced partners like Spotify as a way to help return music to a vibrant future benefitting the entire ecosystem. Working hand in hand with these digital services brought us the industry’s first real growth in nearly two decades. Today, streaming represents the majority of the business. Our challenge is transforming that upturn into sustainable growth. In a market this dynamic, one evolving more rapidly than ever before, success requires creative and continual re-evaluation of how best to bring artists’ music to fans. At UMG, we’ve not only reimagined distribution models and technologies, but entire business models. The only constants must be great music and fair compensation for artists and creators. To that end, the long-term success of Spotify, and others like it, is essential to the ecosystem’s enduring health. I congratulate Daniel on Spotify’s continued growth and innovation, and I look forward to working together with him and his team to develop exciting new ways to connect artists and fans around the world.”