Spotify appears to be stepping up its efforts to take on Apple Music in Asia with key appointments in Japan and Indonesia which indicate that it is preparing to launch in two of the region’s most lucrative markets.
The music streaming service, which boasts 20 million paying subscribers, recently posted a job advertisement for a financial controller in Tokyo to add to its new team of four already setting up in the city. The second job listing which hints at the expansion is for a music editor for Indonesia.
The appointments follow from the company’s entry into the Asian market in April 2013 when it launched in Singapore, Hong Kong and Malaysia. It has since expanded into the Philippines and Taiwan but lags behind Apple Music which only launched this summer and is now widely available in the region, including Japan.
Entering into Japan appears to be a vexing issue for Spotify given the country’s complexity of music licences and its relatively stagnated embracing of music streaming which has allowed CDs to rule music sales.
In light of the issues regarding licences in Japan, it is thought that the service will launch in Indonesia first. Circumstances are favourable in the country, which has a population of 250 million, due to strong smartphone sales which have increased by 55 per cent in the last year.
To oversee future launches Spotify is also hiring an APAC label traffic manager who will “help to ensure that all ad campaigns runs smoothly for our label partners” across the region.