Support Russia Insider - Go Ad-Free!

Spotify, World's Largest Music Streamer, Launches in Russia, 12 Other Eastern European Countries

Yesterday, Spotify launched in Russia as well as 12 other markets: Albania, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, Slovenia, and Ukraine. Music lovers from these countries can  enjoy Spotify’s 50 million tracks, 4 billion playlists, and localized music personalization features.

Russia is the 17th-biggest streaming market in the world and on pace to be the 10th-biggest streaming market by 2030, Spotify stated, the International Federation of Phonographic Industry (IFPI). 

“Our expansion in Europe comes as consumers in the region embrace streaming. Russia in particular is one of the world’s top 20 largest streaming markets — and this launch opens the door for nearly 250 million fans to start discovering new music from their countries and around the world,” the Swedish company stated.

“It’s also a huge moment for artists [from the 13 new countries] who will be able to engage with more fans than ever in an increasingly connected world.” 

“Russia has an incredibly rich music culture (…) Our team on the ground is working closely with local musicians, labels and cultural tastemakers to offer a revolutionary and unrivalled fully Russian music experience,” — Gustav Gyllenhammar, Spotify VP, Markets and Subscriber Growth.

Spotify says it is introducing 200 new playlists featuring artists from across these 13 countries, making them available to its global audience of 286 million listeners and 130 million paid subscribers. 

Thus, Spotify claims to have curated almost 100 playlists across some of the most popular genres, and will have them regularly updated by its team of Russian music experts.

Among these playlists are ‘Hot Hits Russia,’ ‘New Music Friday Russia,’ ‘This Is in Russian,’ and ‘Fully Fresh.’ 

“Starring” playlists include ‘This Is Face,’ ‘This Is GONE.Fludd,’ ‘This Is Little Big,’ ‘This Is Nina Kraviz,’ ‘This Is Rauf & Faik,’ ‘This Is Noize MC,’ ‘This Is Макс Барских’, ‘This Is Клава Кока,’ ‘This Is Тима Белорусских,’ ‘This Is Шарлот,’ ‘This Is СБПЧ,’ and many more.

Additionally, genre playlists like ‘Hip-Hop Cannon,’ ‘Pop Non-Stop,’ ‘Rock Today,’ ‘Solaris,’ ‘Indie Squad’ will feature local and global artists across many styles.

Spotify registered a subsidiary in Russia back in 2014, but postponed its launch in the country several times. 

The main reason lied in uneasy negotiations with local artists and labels, according to music expert Boris Barabanov, cited by business daily Kommersant.

Spotify will measure itself against strong local players, including Boom (a service of leading social network VK), Yandex.Music, MTS Music. Foreign players active in Russia include Apple Music and Deezer.

Support Russia Insider - Go Ad-Free!

Our commenting rules: You can say pretty much anything except the F word. If you are abusive, obscene, or a paid troll, we will ban you. Full statement from the Editor, Charles Bausman.