Spotify Paying $1.38 Million a Month In Rent for Its New Stockholm Offices

Spotify, the music streaming giant, has recently moved into its new luxurious headquarters in Urban Escape, a recently restored city block in central Stockholm. According to Swedish real estate news website Fastighetsvärlden (FV), the move happened on Monday and was considered “the worst kept secret in Stockholm real estate”.

The new office’s square meter price of 7,000 SEK ($823) will add up to annual rent costs of some $16.5 million for the company, with an estimated surface space of about 20,000 square meters. The move to Urban Escape represents another expensive investment for the company, which has previously rented offices in New York, San Francisco, Boston, and Gothenburg.

Spotify’s pattern of lavish spending has been worrying investors ahead of its IPO next May. Earlier this year, the company spent more than $566 million on a 17-year lease in Manhattan, with almost $31 million in upfront payments required. The pricey rent comes alongside major label guarantees of over $2.34 billion over the next two years. The streaming platform has now locked down long-term royalty deals with all three major labels. This all adds up to a lot of money being spent on top company exclusives who have reportedly earned 7-figure incomes. CEO and co-founder Daniel Ek earned $4.5 million this year, while Chief Product Officer Gustav Söderström reported $7.9 million.

The lavish spending could have broader repercussions on Wall Street. While Spotify remains the current streaming music leader, its position remains highly unstable. Apple Music recently acquired Shazam for $400 million, part of a strategy to jumpstart its subscriber rolls. Then there’s the threat of a serious Apple-powered package. With a monthly subscription to a broader suite of devices and services, Apple could quickly reach as many as 300 million paying subscribers for its music offering.

Despite its recent valuation at over 19 billion, some fear that Spotify may actually be over-leveraged. Since its launch in 2008, Spotify has yet to post a profit, which is a concern for investors. The company’s focus on making a profit has been questioned, as it seems to be more focused on spending money on luxurious offices and top executives’ salaries.

Spotify’s move to Urban Escape is one of the most expensive office moves in recent history. However, the company has yet to comment on the move, which is not surprising given the criticism it has faced for its spending habits. Investors will be watching closely to see whether Spotify can turn a profit and how it plans to compete with Apple’s growing music offerings.

In conclusion, Spotify’s move to its new headquarters in Urban Escape highlights the company’s pattern of lavish spending. While the company remains the current streaming music leader, its position remains highly unstable, with Apple Music and other competitors making significant moves in the industry. The company’s focus on spending money on luxurious offices and top executives’ salaries has been a concern for investors, who are eager to see Spotify turn a profit. With its IPO coming up next May, the company will have to prove that it can compete in the highly competitive music streaming industry and make a profit.


Featured image by Urban Escape

5 Responses

  1. kk

    Absolutely lame!!! That artist’s money getting burned into shitty worthless offices!!!
    Pretty sure they could pay a lot more to artists if they were spending less. This is a ship getting drowned slowly!

  2. Remi Swierczek

    The master of chutzpah can do it!
    He just got billion dollars of REAL Chinese cash. All propelled by buch of golf players with laptops and ZERO essence at the CORE!

    $300B of REAL music goodwill converted to $30B (we hope by 2030) of advertising and subscription SHIT by UMG under Ek and Google BOOT.

  3. G.K.

    That companies invest money in shiny expensive offices to impress ( themselves and ) businesspartners and to signal how confident they are that the company has a bright future is – unfortunately – quite common . What is really shocking is the lack of interest to invest and build a system to collect and store all metadata for a musictrack , being then able to pay correctly every artist involved in the musictracks’ soundrecording AND compostion ( … performance royalties AND mechanical royalties … ). This is of course also true for other streaming services , too .

    • Paul Resnikoff

      On the systems, I don’t think a lot of people are paying enough attention to the potential game-killing potential these mechanical rights infringements pose. We’re talking very serious stuff here, with one judge able to read the law and calculation hundreds of millions – if not a billion + – in broader damages. The law does state that the penalty for infringement is $150,000 per violation in the US, especially if the operator knows of the infringement being committed.

  4. Deron Wade

    Too bad they couldn’t spend that money on something else, like, let’s say… um… paying their artists more!