Spotify considering a move into live virtual and in-person events

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Spotify is reportedly mulling an expansion into both virtual and live concert events, potentially improving its relationship with artists and adding a new revenue source for the music streaming platform.

According to The Information, Spotify would sell tickets to events. The company has already experimented with live virtual concerts, though it's considering a move into in-person events as well.

In the medium term, the actual impact to the company's bottom line would be minimal. The Information reports that Spotify isn't looking to compete with existing juggernauts like LiveNation or Anschutz Entertainment Group.

However, in the long term, the move could help the company diversify its revenue. In addition to virtual events, Spotify has been making a major push into the podcasting industry. By the end of 2021, Spotify could overtake Apple as the dominant podcast player.

Additionally, the move could help smooth over relations between Spotify and artists, who have long complained that they don't make much money from the music streaming platform.

In the event space, however, Spotify would be able to leverage the vast amounts of consumer data it harvests via its music streaming platform. It could use that data to help artists plan concerts in less populated areas that would normally be too small for headline performers. By selling tickets to its own hosted events, Spotify could also differentiate its service from its biggest rival, Apple Music.

Spotify's past dabbling in events kicked off as the pandemic shuttered concerts across the globe. The music streamer partnered with a production company to hold prerecorded concerts, including events that featured The Black Keys and the Bleachers' Jack Antonoff.

Currently, Spotify is a major player in the music industry with 356 million active monthly users and 158 million paying subscribers.

The live event industry would represent a big market for the company. In 2019, ticket sales clocked in at $22.6 billion. However, companies like LiveNation currently dominate the market with venue ownership and exclusive partnerships.

Spotify does do business with LiveNation subsidiary TicketMaster through a partnership that allows customers to purchase tickets through the Spotify app.

Apple has also dabbled in live music events over the years. The Cupertino tech giant used to hold iTunes music festivals, and has held more intimate live shows in promotion of Apple Music.

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