Por Supantha Mukherjee
STOCKHOLM, Nov 11 (Reuters) – Spotify on Thursday made a big push to have more audiobooks on its platform by acquiring US audio technology company Findaway, in an attempt to replicate the success it has had with podcasts.
Findaway, which is partnered with audiobook publishers such as Amazon’s Audible, Apple iBooks, Google, and Storytel, offers a global catalog of audiobooks. It also owns Voices, which helps authors self-publish.
“This is the first big step … what we want to achieve is that Spotify consumers can buy any audiobook on Spotify and listen to it,” said Director of Research and Development Gustav Söderström in an interview.
Terms of the transaction, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter, were not disclosed.
Spotify is following a manual similar to that of its podcast business. It ventured into podcasts in 2018, bulking them up with a series of acquisitions, and analysts expect it to overtake Apple as the largest podcast provider by the end of the year, with more than 3 million titles.
The company, which already has an agreement with the Swedish audiobook streaming group Storytel, has also launched the Open Access platform so that publishers can stream their content.
Spotify’s total monthly active users increased 19% to 381 million in the latest quarter, with revenue of about 2.5 billion euros ($ 2.87 billion).
The global audiobook market is expected to be worth $ 9.3 billion in 2026, up from $ 4 billion in 2020, according to research firm Omdia.
(1 dollar = 0.8722 euros) (Report by Supantha Mukherjee Edited in Spanish by Javier López de Lérida)