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Spotify begins massive African and global expansion

The world’s largest music streaming service has unveiled plans to make the subscription service available in more than 80 new markets, including Lesotho and Nigeria

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Spotify is about to fill a glaring gap in its offering, bringing the world’s largest music streaming service to a range of African countries that had previously been left out. The expansion will include a swatch of African countries, from Lesotho to Nigeria, Eswatini to Zimbabwe.

Founder and CEO Daniel Ek announced yesterday that the company will be embarking on a sweeping expansion that will make its streaming platform available to more than a billion people in more than 80 new markets around the world. It will add 36 languages to the platform in Spotify’s broadest market expansion to date.

Yesterday’s Stream On virtual event, at which the plans were unveiled, explored the power of audio, the journey of creation, and the opportunities for creators and fans.

“By reaching even more countries across Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, Europe, and Latin America, we’re giving millions of new creators the opportunity to create, discover, and build a career in audio creation—and giving a billion new fans the opportunity to hear,” Spotify said in a company blog post.

“The existing rich music cultures in each of these markets will now be able to reach Spotify’s global audience. All this untapped music energy and access to our innovative creator tools will help propel artists to new heights and empower them to turn their passion into a profession.

“Plus, giving our artists a global platform goes hand in hand with offering an unmatched catalogue for our listeners. So as we enter new markets, we’ll accelerate the discovery of more genres like K-Pop, reggaeton, and amapiano that have earned a place in the global music arena.”

In each new market, says Spotify, it will work with local creators and partners to expand its music offerings and “deliver a Spotify experience that meets the unique needs of each market”.

Over time, the company aims to introduce the following offerings in each region (as supplied by Spotify):

  • Plans: Free and Premium plans will be available across all the markets. In select markets, Spotify will offer Individual, Family, Duo, and Student Plan options.
  • User Experience: Listeners will be able to select and search from Spotify’s worldwide catalogue when using the product, providing a personalised experience from day one. The home screen will surface personalised playlist programming for new listeners. The browse and search pages will feature worldwide content hubs, and adapt to the local market and the listener’s taste the more they use the service.
  • Music Catalogue: At launch, Spotify will offer its full global catalogue in these new markets. The company will continuously work with local rights holders and partners to expand its catalogue to include more local offerings.
  • Podcasts: In the majority of these markets, Spotify will launch with its full podcast catalogue.* For the others, it will work closely with local partners to introduce more podcasts from its catalogue, as well as Spotify’s proprietary creator platform, Anchor.
  • Platforms: Upon launch, the Spotify experience will be available on Mobile and Desktop Web Player.* Similar to other features, the company will work with partners to introduce Spotify on more platforms, including TV, Speakers, Wearables, and Car in the coming months.

New markets include:

Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Botswana, Brunei Darussalam, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Cameroon, Chad, Comoros, Côte d’Ivoire, Curaçao, Djibouti, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Eswatini, Fiji, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Ghana, Grenada, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Kenya, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Macau, Madagascar, Malawi, Maldives, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mauritius, Micronesia, Mongolia, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Rwanda, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Uganda, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

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