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EK SPURS SPECULATION
IN SWEDISH

Spotify chief Daniel Ek sat down with Swedish TV4 last weekend for an extensive interview, and some of his remarks (assuming the translation from Swedish is accurate) have fueled speculation that the streaming giant plans to buy SoundCloud.

In particular, Ek noted that the company was focusing on "trying to connect [artists and users] and finding opportunities for artists to express themselves and for users to give feedback to the artists." This artist-user dialogue is an essential feature of SoundCloud, which is believed to be for sale—and has licenses in place with the Big Three.

"During the next 10 years,” he predicted, “we think there will be an incredible increase in the number of people creating music. The barriers for creating music have become much, much lower. Today, Spotify has 2 million artists on its platform. To us, the next 10 years is all about enabling these artists to make a living out of their music, and connect them with a new audience.

“Today, our users say ‘introduce me to new music.’ What the artists say is ‘help me find my audience.’ Essentially, that’s two sides of the same coin.”

The implication is that Ek wants to either acquire an existing platform that connects the two halves of the equation, or to build one of his own.

If the former scenario turns out to be the case, Ek’s challenge will be to figure out how to monetize the damn thing, for the artists and for SoundCloud itself.

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