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Spotify Australia Managing Director Karen Lawson to Exit

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Spotify Australia is in the hunt for a new managing director for its Australia and New Zealand activities.

Karen Lawson, who took the reins last June at the Australasian business, based in Sydney, is departing for undisclosed reasons.

The tech company has started the recruitment process for her successor, Billboard can confirm.

A spokesperson for Spotify, which doesn’t typically comment on employee movements, declined to discuss the MD’s exit.

Lawson, the former CEO of start-up accelerator Slingshot, joined Spotify in June 2019. Prior to that, she was chief of recruitment platform careerone.com.au and her resume includes eight years in various roles with Yahoo7, rising to GM of business developments and partnership in 2013.

Lawson is the third executive to lead Spotify in Australasia since the streaming service launched in these parts in 2012. Kate Vale, the founding managing director, left in June 2017 and was succeeded by Jane Huxley, the former head and founder of Pandora’s now-shuttered Australian affiliate. Huxley vacated the role when she was promoted to lead Spotify’s activities in Europe, Middle East and Africa, based in London.

Australia is a key market for Spotify, which has tested several world firsts here, including its Active Media feature which allowed millions of users of its free service Down Under to skip ads as a part targeted marketing initiative.

According to sources with knowledge of the company, Spotify boasts about 10 million users in Australia. The streaming giant recently announced it had 271 million monthly active users around the globe, including 124 million premium subscribers.


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