We’re not trying to make you feel old, but Spotify is now in its 16th year of existence. It’s the most popular music streaming platform in the world if you don’t ask an Apple user – but who exactly owns it? We’ll take a look…
If you like music, you’ve probably heard of the streaming service Spotify.
According to data, Spotify currently has 217 million monthly active users worldwide, including both subscribed and free users. A lot of people use Spotify and the service has over 40 million songs to choose from, whether they like rap, rock, soundtracks or pop.
Despite competition from Deezer, Tidal, Amazon Music, Apple Music, YouTube Music, Quobuz and many other streaming platforms, the service, which offers its services in more than 70 different countries around the world, has since retained one leading market positions. its launch.
Due to its large user base, long history, and recent statement that the company plans to sponsor Barcelona’s Camp Nou stadium starting next season, it’s no surprise that the company is worth several billions – but who is responsible and who owns the company?
Who owns Spotify?
Spotify’s two co-founders, Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon, still own the largest shares of the company, but they are now joined by companies like Sony Music Entertainment, Tencent Music Entertainment, Baillie Gifford and Morgan Stanley. .
The company’s largest shareholder is Daniel Ek, who owns a total of 47 million shares of the company, including warrants. Without those warrants, he owns a 9% stake in the company. Martin Lorentzon is one of the company’s co-founders. After Daniel Ek, he is the one who holds the most shares. Martin Lorentzon holds 24 million shares in the company, or 13% of the total, including warrants. Martin Lorentzon holds 12% of the company’s capital excluding warrants.
Daniel Ek, an entrepreneur since his youth, began his career as a freelance web designer at the age of 14. His website building skills allowed him to earn $50,000 a month while he was still in school, and he even hired classmates to help him meet clients. requests. Ek enrolled at university to study computer technology, but quit after finding it too monotonous. He started his first company, Advertigo, which was eventually purchased for $2 million by TradeDoubler.
Daniel Ek had the idea to create a platform where users could listen to any music in the world for a small fee including advertisements in between. He wanted to rid the music world of piracy, so he created a platform where users could listen to any music in the world for a small fee including ads in between. Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon brought in coders from Ek’s former university, KTH, and built Spotify in a modest office in Stockholm. It was introduced as an invitation-only service in October 2008.
Developer salaries, office expenses, and music rights rentals were all paid out of Martin Lorentzon’s own pocket. Although they made efforts to convince investors, Martin was unhappy with the circumstances under which they were invited to work on the project.
As a result of these unexpected costs, Martin’s stake in Spotify became the largest: his option is worth more than $4 billion, he has 43.3% of the voting rights and he owns 12.7% of the shares of the society. Hagnö, who chose to support a former colleague’s new venture, owns 6.6 percent of the company’s shares, which are worth $1.5 billion.
Lorentzon served as CEO from 2006 to 2013 and chairman of the board from 2008 to 2016 before Ek took over as CEO and chairman of the board.
Spotify institutional shareholders
With both co-founders discussed and their continued friendship confirmed by the duo in most interviews, institutional shareholders are the next group up for discussion, with Sony Music Entertainment being the most well-known. Throughout Spotify’s existence, each of these companies has come on board and provided financial assistance at key milestones in the company’s history.
Sony Music Entertainment
In 2015, the company struck a deal with Spotify, which made Spotify Sony’s official streaming music provider for PlayStation consoles. This is why Sony allows gamers to use Spotify to stream music while playing video games on their consoles. Sony Music Entertainment controls less than 5% of the company’s entire share capital.
Tencent Music Entertainment
Tencent Music Entertainment is arguably the largest company owning shares in Spotify. It is China’s largest music company and also publishes some of the world’s biggest video games, including PlayerUnknowns BattleGrounds (PUBG).
Controlled by Tencent Holdings, Tencent Music owns 9.1% of Spotify’s shares, giving it almost twice as much weight as Sony Music, indicating the stature and scale of this company’s size.
Baillie Gifford is an investment management company established over a century ago. They are long-term investors who place great importance on the growth of some of the world’s largest companies as part of their investment strategy.
They now manage over $450 billion in specialized equity, including 11.8% in Spotify, making them the company’s second-largest shareholder after the two co-founders.
Morgan Stanley is an international investment bank and financial services company based in New York. Morgan Stanley was founded on September 16, 1935 by JP Morgan & Co. partners Henry Sturgis Morgan (JP Morgan’s grandson), Harold Stanley and others in response to the Glass-Steagall Act, which required the separation of commercial and investment banks. businesses.
Morgan Stanley is a financial services company that advises, originates, trades, manages and distributes funds for organizations, governments and individuals through its subsidiaries and affiliates. Institutional securities, wealth management and investment management are the three main segments of the company.
Jake is a professional writer, journalist, and lifelong tech fan. It covers KnowYourMobile news and user guides.