Salaries at the streaming giant have increased 152% in five years.
Digital Music News has taken a look at Spotify’s 2015 financial filings, released this week, and found a stark statistic: the average salary at the Swedish streaming company is now €151,180, or $168,747.
As noted in the article, the figure is an average from receptionist to CEO and includes different types of remuneration from direct payments to company shares and tax-deferred pensions.
Five years ago, in 2010, the average Spotify salary stood at €60,000, or $66,972, showing a steady increase and a rise of 152%. This is despite losses for the streaming company that have increased five-fold to $188.7 million in the same period. Digital Music News also note that part of the increase is a rise in salaries at the highest levels with annual compensations reaching €16.9 million, or $18.9 million, a year, an increase of 300% since 2014.
But while the numbers are impressive, the flip side of these statistics is much darker and has huge implications for the new gaps between workers in the music industry. For one, Spotify is still operating largely on borrowed money. In its filings the company claims it needs the stronger salaries to justify competitiveness and innovation, two recurring ideas and excuses in the tech world.
Yet it is precisely the sort of innovation that Spotify has encouraged that is currently leaving the artists, who provide the music on which services like Spotify are built, with less earnings for their creations. Royalty payments have increased but the majority of this new money is going towards labels, meaning the artists are still at the back of the queue when it comes to seeing any money from this technological revolution.
Earlier this week, Spotify announced it struck a deal to stream user-created DJ mixes.