Skip to main content

Sony Giving Free Streaming Services the Stink Eye

Speaking to investors in Tokyo on Tuesday, Sony chief financial officer Kevin Kelleher said the company will take a cautious approach to free, ad-supported streaming services like Spotify in the wake…

Speaking to investors in Tokyo on Tuesday, Sony chief financial officer Kevin Kelleher said the company will take a cautious approach to free, ad-supported streaming services like Spotify in the wake of Taylor Swift‘s ground-shaking decision to shun the Swedish company. Kelleher said there’s been a lot of talk around Sony about whether a consumption method supported by ad dollars produces enough value for content owners and artists.

Related

“The key question is, are the free, ad-supported services taking away from how quickly and to what extent we can grow those paid services?” Kelleher said, according to the Wall Street Journal. “That’s something we’re paying attention to as content owners who license our content to the different platforms. It’s an area that’s gotten everyone’s attention.”

Kelleher stressed that Sony remains “very encouraged” by the growth of paid, subscription-based streaming services. To emphasize this, the company predicted that streaming and subs will make up 60 percent of the industry’s $8.2 billion revenue in four years time.

Sony Music’s stable of labels include Columbia, RCA, Epic, Arista Nashville and Legacy Recordings, among others.

Spotify has had its hands full since Swift removed all of her music from the leading streaming service earlier this month. Following Swift’s departure, country star Jason Aldean removed his new album, Old Boots, New Dirt, from Spotify because he felt songwriters, publishers, producers and engineers were not getting fairly compensated.