Just More Zeros? Spotify Hits a Million Subs

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Spotify now has a cool one million subscribers – paying, that is.

That amounts to 15 percent of the overall listeners in Europe, though the breakdown between lower- and higher-tier plans has not been offered.  “More than ever, we’re seeing the power of our freemium model, with the vast majority of subscribers upgrading after having first used the free service,” Spotify founder Daniel Ek stated.

So, what happens next?  The question is whether this tilts the math for the remaining US-based heavyweights.  Everyone is reading into recents comments by Warner Music chief Edgar Bronfman, Jr., and hoping for a WMG tie-up ahead.  UMG is negotiating the matter, though the process looks a bit sticky.  Ultimately, the feeling within the industry is that stateside deals will eventually happen.

But maybe the real question is whether any of this benefits artists.  Deep-dives continue to reveal abysmal payouts to artists – often just above zero – even in cases where huge listening levels exist.