Spotify CEO Daniel Ek said on Tuesday that his company expects to pay out $500 million in royalties to rights holders this year. Speaking at a technology and media event in Los Angeles, Ek said this amount is essentially equal to what Spotify has paid out in total since 2008, according to Billboard.biz.
Billboard notes that by comparison, Pandora paid out $230.2 million in its last four reporting fiscal quarters, while VEVO has paid out $200 million since its 2009 debut.
Universal Music Group President of Global Digital Business Rob Wells also spoke at the event, held by the Founders Forum, and said Spotify has become a "substantial" source of revenue for UMG. For this reason, the label is not likely to end its relationship with Spotify when their contract is up for renewal.
Ek also spoke of the power of mobile devices, saying, "We’re going through a tectonic shift to mobile now." He added that since piracy is not the major issue on mobile devices as it is on desktop computers, for content providers "it’s kind of like we get to start all over again," on digital distribution.