Spotify India launch seems imminent, confirms CEO

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Spotify will have its work cut out in India, as the music streaming segment already fields intense competition.

CEO and Co-Founder of Spotify - has confirmed that they are going to launch Spotify in India.

"We are working on launching in some of the biggest markets in the world, including India, Russia, and Africa which has a very rich musical culture".

Last week, we also learned that Spotify reportedly opened its office in Mumbai, India, which was a more than a subtle hint it might soon start offering localized content.

Streaming music leader Spotify said on Thursday it has a clear path to profit as it spelled out to retail investors its growth plans and how it aims to fend off big rivals Apple Inc (AAPL.O) and Inc (AMZN.O) ahead of an unusual April 3 listing. There are easily two billion people in the world who can afford to pay for some level of music, yet Spotify and Apple Music combined have only around 100 million subscribers globally.

Spotify now has over 159 million active users, including over 71 million Spotify Premium subscribers, offering a choice between a free ad-supported music service and a fully-featured, ad-free subscription option known as Spotify Premium, according to Businesstech.

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Earlier this week, Spotify launched in four new markets, including South Africa, Vietnam, Israel, and Romania. Instead, its first public market valuation will be set just before the stock lists, based on the number of shares that existing investors want to sell, demand from those willing to buy and the price that the parties agree on.

In a filing to USA regulators, Spotify claimed it had a 42pc market share of the global streaming space in terms of revenue in 2016. Spotify will skip the roadshow meetings and media interviews that are typical in a traditional initial public offering.

Specific details about its Indian operations, however, were not disclosed.

As part of its goal to reach as many people as possible, the music streaming service said its free, ad-supported tier would remain in place, even as almost 90% of its revenue comes from premium, subscription-based users.

Spotify's F-1 revealed that it finished 2017 with 71m paying subscribers and 159m monthly active users (MAUs).

With the pitch now delivered in written and spoken form, all eyes will be on SPOT on the New York Stock Exchange next month to see whether investors have bought the narrative that this streaming music business is indeed the one that can reach the kind of scale required to realise some profitability in the long-term.