Spotify, Europe's most popular music service, today announced it is coming to the US. The news comes straight from the horse's mouth: a webpage at the URL spotify.com/uk/coming-to-the-us.
There is no word yet on timing (we're still being told "later this year"), pricing information, or the rumored Facebook integration. Still, Americans will soon have access to a huge library of free music, legally.
Last month, Spotify signed a distribution deal with Universal Music Group, the world's largest music label. As we said at the time, since Spotify has managed to sign three of the four major labels in the US, the service would likely soon launch in the US. Now it's official.
The popular European music streaming service was originally planning to launch in the US by the end of 2010. As we know, that didn't happen. Nevertheless, the service recently passed the 1 million subscriber mark, making it the biggest paid music service in the world.
Five months ago, Spotify reportedly struck a deal with EMI Music and six months ago, the company signed a deal with Sony Music Entertainment. Spotify thus has three of the four major music labels; the other one left is Warner Music Group.
US labels have hesitated to support Spotify's model as they don't believe it can be profitable. Spotify saw a huge financial loss in 2009. The music-streaming company enjoyed revenues of £11.32 million, but endured distribution costs of £608,711, cost of sales equal to £18.82 million, and administrative expenses of £8.29 million. The result was an operating loss of £16.40 million, and a net loss of £16.66 million after taxation.