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After Warner Music, Spotify to remove music from Saregama in India

FE Online

Spotify seems to have hurried its launch in India. The Swedish streaming giant has told the Delhi High Court that it will erase the music belonging to Saregama, one of the premier music labels in India. The setback for the streaming app follows the impasse between both the parties over licensing of music in India.

In its plea, obtained by Bar & Bench, presented to the Single Judge Bench presided by Justice Jayant Nath, Saregama said it seeks a restriction on Spotify from accessing its music. Spotify did not counter the plea and said it will begin the process of deleting Saregama s music, which is supposed to be finished by May 3.

The first hearing also outlined what exactly caused the rift between the two companies. The court was informed that Spotify India Pvt Ltd. was in talks with Saregama India over the availability of latter s music catalogue on the streaming app. Saregama nodded to enter an agreement but there were a few grey areas yet to be discussed.

But despite that, Saregama and Spotify India discussed the terms of the license, in addition to negotiating early access to music before the latter officially launched in India. But the agreement could not be finalised between Spotify India and Saregama, resulting in the removal of the latter s music from the streaming platform.

Saregama s plight from Spotify puts the company in a tough spot, especially when it is challenging Apple Music, YouTube Music, JioSaavn, Gaana, and other streaming platforms in India. Spotify s India launch has not been a smooth ride per se – Warner Music sought a preemptive bar on its music in India. Even though Spotify enjoys a wide base across the globe, the unavailability of major artists on its India version came across as a put-off for many.

Moreover, Spotify India now has the costliest subscription in India after Apple Music slashed its subscription price. Spotify Premium costs Rs 119 per month while Apple Music, YouTube Music, JioSaavn, and Gaana ask for Rs 99 a month. JioSaavn and Gaana even lowered the price of the annual premium subscription to Rs 299 from Rs 999 to add fuel to the fight.