The rise of digital music on the Internet has made a mainstream conversation out of the conflict between business and art. Musical artists have made a very public stand against music distribution methods that deprive them of their rightful royalties and income. Many of the record labels have resisted endorsing digital music distribution channels that do not give the label a cut and the recording companies have been very litigious in protecting their interest. Following the fall of Napster, iTunes and Amazon.com rose as primary channels of music distribution on the Internet. But now, there is Spotify and given its success at generating interest, revenue, and industry support, it looks like Spotify may endure where other similar services have not. Spotify is the vision of Daniel Ek.
Daniel Ek is the CEO and Founder of the streaming music service, Spotify. Since October 2008, when Ek launched Spotify as a legal, licensed, digital music service on the Internet, Spotify has had over ten million registered users. More than two and a half million of those users have paid subscriptions. This may be due to the influence and vision of Daniel Ek; his model for Spotify was innovative, and he rapidly synergized his new music service with Facebook, giving it instant exposure that paid off.
An entrepreneur and lover of music, Daniel Ek has had a great deal of professional success, particularly given that he did not complete college. At age 29, Daniel Ek landed at 395 on the British Rich List, which is not a small accomplishment for a man who dropped out of the Royal Institute Of Technology! Born in Sweden, Daniel Ek has been an entrepreneur since his childhood, as well as being technically inclined. When he was only fourteen years old, Daniel Ek began his career in the tech sector by building websites for local businesses for $5,000 per site! Clever even then, Ek built his own servers and then offered web hosting services to the businesses for which he made websites.
The first legitimate business Daniel Ek founded was Advertigo, which combined his self-taught coding skills with his knack for self-promotion. The online advertising company Advertigo was bought by TradeDoubler, a Swedish company. In fact, Daniel Ek has been involved with several small companies that were later bought by larger, more recognizable Internet institutions. Shortly after Ek went to work for Tradera, an Internet auction business, eBay, purchased the company! Daniel Ek’s skills and success rate made him a hot commodity for Internet businesses and, prior to founding Spotify, he took executive positions with Jajja Communications, Stardoll, and uTorrent. Serving as Chief Technical Officer and CEO of those established companies gave Daniel Ek the experience needed to credibly take on the digital music industry.
Devoted since 2006 to making the idea and execution of Spotify a success, Daniel Ek is one of the world’s shining examples of how energy, enthusiasm, and talent may be used to create an impressive business.
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