Jorge Espinel, who spent four years working on News Corp.'s digital strategy, has been named as Spotify's new head of global business development. As AllThingsD reports, the position has remained unfilled since October of last year, after Gerrit Meier's resignation.
Espinel is tasked with forging strategic partnerships in order to grow its subscriber count, estimated last month to be around 1.5 million in the U.S. Partnerships like the one with Vodafone, announced last month, that will bundle the service's premium tier for Vodafone's 4G customers in the U.K. Spotify also maintains telco partnerships with Orange in Switzerland, Telia in Sweden and Telefónica and Yoigo in Spain.
Earlier this year, Spotify began setting itself up to do business in two markets, Latin America and Asia, it has yet to launch in. It's not wild speculation to assume that Espinel, a native of Colombia, will begin his search for business partners in those regions all but immediately.
Prior to his time at News Corp., Espinel was a partner at digital media investment firm Fuse Capital, formerly Velocity Interactive Group. He graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania with degrees in economics and international relations.