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WMG VS. SPOTIFY, ROUND TWO

Spotify has launched in India despite the lack of a license from Warner Music Group for its publishing clients. The launch comes after a Bombay court ruled that it would take four weeks to see how the lack of a license for Warner/Chappell plays out; both parties say they’re happy with the court’s decision.

Earlier this monring, Warner Music Group was fighting back against a claim that a Bombay court denied the music company an injunction against Spotify over the launch of the streaming service in India without a proper contract for Warner/Chappell artists.

“Spotify's comments [Monday] about our fair market negotiations were appalling to us, and we’re shocked that they would exploit the valuable rights of songwriters without a license," WMG said in a statement. "That said, we remain optimistic that we can reach a strong, balanced commercial agreement.” 

Spotify intended to launch with a statutory license, which they  have not yet received. It has been delayed for four weeks to give the court time to decide if Spotify is infringing on Warner/Chappell artists, according to reports in Music Business Worldwide.

Spotify had no issue with the four-week delay.

“We’re pleased with today’s outcome," a Spotify spokesperson said. "It ensures songwriters, artists, labels and publishers will benefit from the financial opportunity of the Indian market and that consumers will enjoy an excellent Spotify experience. As we’ve said all along, we’re hopeful for a negotiated solution with Warner based on market rates.”

Here is WMG's full statement on the matter:

“We welcome the Court’s decision to direct Spotify to deposit monies with the Court and to maintain complete records of any use of our music as well as all advertising and subscription revenue earned by Spotify.

“These are positive steps to protect our songwriters’ interests. We’re also pleased that Spotify cannot pursue proceedings for their claim to a statutory license before the Intellectual Property Appellate Board for a period of four weeks. Our copyright infringement case will continue on an expedited basis.

“Spotify's comments [Monday] about our fair market negotiations were appalling to us, and we’re shocked that they would exploit the valuable rights of songwriters without a license," WMG said in a statement. "That said, we remain optimistic that we can reach a strong, balanced commercial agreement.” 

Stay tuned.

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