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Warner Music CEO Urges Streaming Services To Increase Prices

May 23, 2023 | Kali Girl

In recent years, discussions on the struggles artists face in the music-streaming industry have often centered on a single solution: increasing subscription fees, reports Variety. While Apple Music, Amazon Music, and Deezer have already raised their prices, other platforms continue to stick with the same $10 monthly rate since their inception.

Last summer, Milana Lewis, CEO of the distribution and payments platform Stem, told Variety said, “The price of everything else on earth is going up, and they all keep finding new ways to make subscriptions cheaper.” 

On Wednesday, shortly after Spotify’s livestreamed “Stream On” conference, where they unveiled various new initiatives but no increase in U.S. subscription prices, New Warner Music CEO Robert Kyncl spoke at Morgan Stanley. He highlighted that adjusting the price of a monthly streaming subscription for inflation would result in a cost of $13.25 instead of the current $10.

“I do think that music is undervalued, and I think it’s under-appreciated in the markets,” he said. “This is not my opinion: If you take the U.S., the price that the user pays per hour of consumption of music is half of what they pay for movies and TV shows on streaming services. I’m not even counting cable TV. It’s 50% undervalued today.”

“It is up to us, the industry overall, the DSPs and the labels to figure out a new model that drives value of music up while growing the business.”

“After a decade of incredible growth and coming out of the trial of the industry,” he concluded on the issue, “we need to be positioned in new ways for the next decade.”

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