Spotify CEO Daniel EK loves his footie. After failing in a bid to buy Arsenal of the EPL last year, he turned his sights to getting in bed with FC Barcelona, another major football team on the world stage. It’s now confirmed that Spotify will spend a reported US$310 million over four years to sponsor the club and its stadium.
It took about 3.7 seconds for the music community to start complaining that this money would be better spent compensating artists for their work. But Spotify insists that this deal will actually benefit artists. This is from Spotify Chief Freemium Business Officer Alex Norström:
“It’s about connecting fans with artists of every kind – players and artists, music and sports. Barcelona fans and audio lovers on Spotify will come together to form a massive, globally connected community bridging the worlds of music and football…As we look to grow the Spotify brand worldwide, there are few partners that have this sort of scale and global reach. Being able to connect music and football fans from Barcelona to Mumbai, Jakarta to Rio De Janeiro is really a unique opportunity.
“More fans engaging with our platform means more opportunities for creators to live off of their art. FC Barcelona’s massive global fanbase will help fuel that growth. And for fans – both music and Barça fans – we’ll be creating more interactive and exciting experiences to connect with the artists they love.”
The team’s stadium, Camp Nou, will somehow be branded with Spotify. Artists will be featured on digital screens within the stadium. Barcelona jerseys will also be branded with the Spotify logo.