Spotify to launch in China

Spotify has announced a partnership with Chinese media company Tom Group, which will see the music streaming service launching in the world's most populous country. Tom Group, which has done similar deals before with Skype and eBay, has 300 million users in China.

It may be as a result of the investment from Li Ka-Shing, an Asian investor who - along with an unnamed venture capital firm - provided £30 million in financing for the company earlier in the month. Spotify will be going up against a number of other free streaming music services that operate in the country.

Some think it might have difficulty. Principal analyst at BDA, Liu Ning told Brand Republic: "Many local websites are already providing the same free services in China for online music streaming. I don't expect Spotify to be popular in China, as Chinese people are not familiar with this website. It will depend on Spotify's business models".

Others expressed concern over the Chinese content of Spotify's catalogue, with Sean Leow, co-founder of creative networking site Neocha.com, saying that the service "offers one of the largest bodies of streaming music available, (but has) a limited amount of Chinese musicians".

Spotify is rumoured to be planning a US rollout before the end of the year, and currently has mobile applications for Android and the iPhone in the works. The latter is awaiting approval from Apple.


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