An iPhone showing the Spotify app. Photo: Erik Mårtensson/TT
Sweden's most famous startup has raised one billion dollars in loans to defend itself against competition, according to reports swirling in the Swedish and global media.
The US-based newspaper said its sources had confirmed that Spotify had raised one billion dollars in investment loans as competition in the music and video streaming markets hots up.
The loans could be converted into stock if the Stockholm-born business goes public on the stock exchange, according to WSJ.
The move comes just weeks after Spotify's co-founder Daniel Ek revealed that more than 30 million paying subscribers are now on its books.
Spotify's co-founder Daniel Ek. Photo: Janerik Henriksson/TT
Spotify is estimated to be worth $8 billion and is available in 58 countries,
Streaming – which allows unlimited, on-demand listening – has been rapidly growing in recent years and transforming the music industry, with a growing number of rivals seeking to challenge Spotify's early dominance.
Apple Music, launched in June 2015, has quickly become the second leading force, announcing last month that it had reached 11 million subscribers.
Paris-based Deezer, which is strong in Europe but has a small presence in the United States, says it has six million paying subscribers, while Rhapsody, established in 2001 as the pioneer of streaming, had 3.5 million as of December.
Tidal, a project led by rap mogul Jay-Z and other stars that emphasizes high-quality audio and exclusive releases, said in September that it had one million subscribers but has not given further updates.
Spotify did not immediately comment on the investment loan speculation.