Montreal Based Stingray Digital Is the New Music Industry Player to Look out For. The Company Is Making Its Presence Felt in a Rapidly Changing and Evolving Music Industry Even in an Uncertain Economic Environment.
While the future of the music industry remains unpredictable, experts have believed that on-demand streaming services would be the future, as they give music fans access to millions of tunes for a small payment of a couple of dollars per month.
Service providers like Spotify, Apple Music and Google Play are all being touted as the way forward, but Stingray’s business model is different.
The company produces genre-specific, audio-only music channels that come with cable or satellite subscriptions. The company has a team of music experts to create playlists for every conceivable genre.
The strategy may seem weird to an outsider, as these days consumers are spending more times on their mobile phones and tablets rather than watching Television. But Stingray looks like it is beating the odds, the company claims it is competing with bigger and better funded competitors rather than the smaller online music companies.
Stingray Digital, which specializes in digital media including interactive music broadcasting and distribution, feels that once venture funding for small players in the music industry ceases, it would be just be Google and Apple that would run the show.
Swedish company Spotify could remain on the music scene, but other players could disappear, the company feels. This claim could even be substantiated, as Google acquired Songza, a streaming music service. Rdio, which declared bankruptcy, was acquired by California based Pandora.
However the Canadian company Stingray stayed strong and healthy, its strategy proving it right, the company’s direct customers are satellite providers and cable providers. Not having to deal directly with angry music fans on the internet has proved to be lucrative for it.
The satellite and cable providers pay the company to carry its channels. The channels themselves too follow a different business model as they are not interactive. As the viewers don’t choose the songs or genre, the company spends a lot less on paying royalties to music artists than on-demand services and in the process makes the service cheaper for the providers too.
The fact that the service is available on satellite and cable TV means that it is reaching a huge number of households. The company recently reported that 138 million households have access to its channels worldwide. This is higher than Spotify which has 20 million paying subscribers.
The comparison may not be entirely fair though, Spotify’s subscribers are paying just to use the service while Stingray’s end consumers may or may not be listening to music on the channels.
Stingray could win the music battle against venture capital backed streaming service companies if it continues to use its intuitive approach and understanding of the music industry.