The two big local players Spotify will face are JioSaavn and Gaana. Now JioSaavn is a newly minted combination of JoiMusic, which began distributing Bollywood content into the United States back in the mid-2000s and is controlled by one of India’s biggest telco companies Jio. According to Telcotalk JoiMusic, before the merger, had been growing consistently over the last year and half
, and so has it’s telco parent company that boasts over 250 million users; while Saavan, which offered both free and paid version of the app that is now going to be phased into a paid option for the new product.
The other company is Gaana with over 80 million monthly users, which is more than Spotify has in any single country at the moment. Gaana isn’t a new player to this space as the company started in 2010 but according to Prashan Agarwal, the company’s CEO, in a recent interview with Quartz
the company started to see massive growth through its app and adoption of smartphones in 2015. This parallels Spotify’s experience in Latin American markets. The piece even highlighted how Google Trends shows Gaana as the most searched music streaming platform. The financial situation of the company is also interesting, as it’s owned by Times Internet, India’s biggest media company, and received a $115 million investment in February by Tencent
. The same company that swapped stocks with Spotify last year and who I mentioned last week an investor Anghami, the biggest Middle Eastern music streaming platform.
Now there are other players beyond JoiSaavn and Gaana. There is also Hungama Music and Wynk, which is owned by the teclo company Airtel. I won’t dive too deep here, cause I’ll be swimming too far from what I know, but I found this Livemint article interesting
as it was highlighting the rise non-Bollywood music across Indian streaming services as more people are getting online. Though Spotify is reportedly in active talks with companies
like Times Music, Eros International, Zee Music, and T-Series, I wonder how many regional niches the company will realistically be able to go down.
I’d be remiss not to mention that Amazon Music launched earlier this year
and that the cost of Amazon Prime, including Music and the other features, is cheaper than Gaana, JoiSaavn, and Apple Music, which is also in the market. So far there is little data of how Amazon Music is doing in the market, but I’ll be interested in how much Spotify will try to charge once in the market considering there is already stress on the company on not making enough person user.
O, I forgot…there is still one company I should mention.