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SoundCloud secures Polaris deal, expands Go+ into four Nordic markets

By | Published on Thursday 26 March 2020


SoundCloud yesterday rolled out its premium service SoundCloud Go+ in four new European markets: Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden. The expansion was in part enabled by a licensing deal with Polaris, the copyright hub that brings together the Danish, Finnish and Norwegian song right collecting societies.

The fan-centric paid-for SoundCloud Go service (not to be confused with the creator-centric paid-for SoundCloud Pro service) first launched in 2016 and – following this week’s expansion – is now available in nineteen countries, meaning it now covers the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and much of Western Europe. By paying a monthly subscription users get access to extra functionality and extra catalogue, plus ads are removed.

Announcing the latest expansion, the firm’s SVP Subscriptions & Marketing, Anthony Gabriele, said: “SoundCloud is the first place listeners go to discover what’s next in music, and connect with the vibrant community of creators, curators and fellow listeners directly, using tools like comments and messaging. SoundCloud Go+ unlocks access to SoundCloud’s full catalogue and allows fans to take their music anywhere, anytime, while financially supporting the more than 25 million creators who are building and growing their careers on the platform”.

The deal with Polaris was announced at the same time as the expansion. The Danish, Finnish and Norwegian song right collecting societies – Koda, Teosto and Tono respectively – have collaborated on various initiatives under the Polaris brand since 2013. Last year that venture morphed into a full-on copyright hub able to negotiate multi-territory licensing deals on behalf of the three Nordic societies.

The Polaris Hub sits alongside a number of other similar copyright hubs around the world involving other collecting societies. Such hubs seek to reduce the number of deals multi-territory digital services need to do in order to license all the song rights.

Confirming the SoundCloud deal, the CEO of Polaris Hub Åsa Carild said: “We are very pleased to have reached an agreement with SoundCloud. This ensures that Nordic composers and music authors will continue to receive remuneration when their music is streamed, as well as data on music usage from different territories. This is yet another important milestone for our members”.