Spotify in £1.18bn copyright lawsuit

Posted on 9 January, 2018 by Bailey Clarke

Spotify, the Swedish based music streaming service has been accused of breaching the rights of songwriters and publishers.

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The online music giant has 18 commercial premises around the world, thanks in part to its huge turnover. With offices in New York, London, Singapore and of course Sweden, Spotify is spread far and wide but now faces a new threat.

The music publisher Wixen Music Publishing, who represent music artists such as Weezer, Tom Petty and The Doors, is suing Spotify for at least £1.18bn ($1.6bn) for more than 10,000 songs. It is alleged that Spotify failed to get the correct licences from Wixen that would have allowed the streaming service to distribute the songs.

This isn’t the first time Spotify have faced similar claims, as back in 2015 a punk label Victory Records had claimed it was missing out on composition royalties. In 2016 Spotify paid $20m in outstanding royalties to a number of publishers via the National Music Publishers’ Association then again in May of 2017 Spotify settled lawsuits with three small publishers including the estate of Jaco Pastorius for over $43m for allowing some of their songs be made available to their users without consent.

On a positive note, Spotify as a music service is the most successful in the business, with reports indicating they have 60m paying users. Spotify are currently valued at $19bn and are looking to float on the stock market in the very near future.

When it comes to exchanges, Spotify is eyeing up the New York Stock Exchange and furthermore they are reportedly also considering a direct listing. Riding a currently high value and their documents already filed in December 2017 we could see them trading very shortly.



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