Spotify is finally coming to the land of K-pop

Spotify will offer 60 million songs and 4 billion playlists to South Korean listeners. PHOTO: REUTERS

STOCKHOLM (BLOOMBERG) - Spotify Technology will bring its service to South Korea in the first half of next year, expanding into one of the largest music markets it has yet to reach.

The audio streaming service will offer 60 million songs and 4 billion playlists to South Korean listeners, according to a statement last Thursday (Dec 17).

The move also will help more South Korean artists reach Spotify's 320 million customers globally, the company said. The explosion of K-pop in recent years has made the country's music more valuable than ever.

After years of booming growth in the United States and Europe, Spotify is looking to Asia for its next generation of customers.

Bloomberg reported earlier this year that the coronavirus pandemic delayed Spotify's efforts to expand into South Korea and Russia, the two biggest music markets it does not yet serve.

With in-person meetings on hold, it was harder for the company to hammer out the complex arrangements needed to get established in the countries.

Last Thursday, Spotify executive Alex Norstrom described South Korea as "an epicentre for music, culture and tech innovation."

Spotify began offering its first K-pop playlist in 2014. Since then, listeners have spent more than 180 billion minutes on the music genre.

"We are proud to have been a part of the K-pop global story, showcasing the genre on our platform and enabling its discovery all over the world, from Asia to the US, South America, Europe and the Middle East," Mr Norstrom said.

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