Spotify’s RapCaviar Curator Leaves Ahead of IPO

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The genius behind Spotify’s RapCaviar playlist Tuma Basa is taking his talents to YouTube. His exit comes one day after Spotify filed paperwork for its IPO with the Security and Exchanges Commission. Will Basa’s departure have any impact on the company’s ability to attract new subscribers as they get ready to enter the public markets?

Why This Matters: As one of the music industries most notable figures Basa had been putting together playlist for Spotify since 2015. While he’s best known for RapCaviar which has nearly 9 million listeners, Basa also helped grow its most sought after playlist Today’s Tops Hits to 19 million listeners. In a statement to Billboard the company plans to continue its focus on the playlist. “The RapCaviar team, which is rapidly expanding with boots on the ground globally, is committed to building the brand and giving its users the best hip hop experience on the platform” according to the statement.

Although Spotify’s subscriber numbers have grown it has struggled to become profitable. They now have 71 million paid subscribers and 159 million active users in total. Competition continues to heat up in the streaming space with companies like Apple Music which reported it had 36 million paid subscribers. Only time will tell if Spotify can keep its curated playlist edge and attract more subscribers with Basa no longer in the mix.

What’s Next: According to Billboard Basa is going to YouTube’s “Remix” the company’s  streaming service that will join forces with Google to launch a new subscription based version. As for Spotify, the music streaming service will trade under the symbol “SPOT” at the New York Stock Exchange.

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