Universal launches $1.50-a-month Spotify rival in Brazil

Universal Music Group is launching its own budget streaming service in Brazil, charging customers the equivalent of just US $1.55 (€1.45) per month.

The platform, Bradesco Music, arrives later this month and is the result of a partnership with Bradesco, one of the largest private banks in the territory.

Bradesco Music was announced at an event in Sao Paolo, Brazil earlier this week (pictured). It will be free to access for owners of a new Bradesco Music-branded credit card.

For standard punters, a monthly fee of BR $4.90 will be charged for unlimited access to a desktop version of the platform, as well as a mobile/tablet app.

That equates to little more than a single US Dollar / Euro.

Bradesco Music is clearly an attempt by Universal to monetise the mainstream consumer in Brazil, the world’s ninth biggest recorded music market.

As such, subscribers will have access to a limited catalogue of just half a million tracks, all of which are owned by Universal. That’s 60 times smaller than the 30m+ catalogue available on the likes of Spotify.

Subscribers will also be able to access 50,000 video clips in high definition, as well as exclusive playlists from Universal, new releases and artist news stories. Plus they will be able to compete to win unique experiences, including the chance to gain access to rehearsals of national and international shows.

In addition, Bradesco Music promises behind-the-scenes updates from stars, offering access into “the daily life of an artist”.


The announcement follows the recent news that Universal had tied with B2B music tech provider Mondia to create a white label music app that could be quickly rebranded by commercial partners.

There are clear advantages for Universal of controlling its own streaming app. It will likely pay Mondia a retainer for its services, while Bradesco benefits from promotion.

That could meaning the major keeps 100% of the net record royalty proceeds from Bradesco Music – before paying a proportion out to artists, of course.

“This partnership reinforces the positioning of Bradesco Cards in offering innovative products and services,” said the Director of Bradesco Cards, Alexander Rappaport.

“In this case, we are [providing] customers with quality musical entertainment, produced by who else understands the subject in the world.”

“We are pleased to have accomplished this pioneering partnership with Bradesco and offer customers another way to consume music,” said Jose Antonio Eboli, President of Universal Music Brazil.

“We have a vast and eclectic music catalogue and always seek new ways of bringing art to the Brazilians.

“I’m sure that this new service will be very well appreciated by the holders of Bradesco Music cards and we insist that they have the best experiences the music universe can provide them.”

Spotify launched in Brazil in May last year, becoming the service’s 57th market.

According to IFPI statistics, recorded music revenues in Brazil were down slightly by 1.7% in 2013, up to US $227.9m – but this was after two years of significant growth in the territory.

Brazil’s numbers for 2014 haven’t yet emerged, but it is widely expected to show healthy annual growth in 2014 due to the increase in streaming users in the territory.

Bradesco Music comes two years after Universal launched a consumer-facing service in Africa with Samsung, The Kleek.

Samsung signed up to be The Kleek’s exclusive handset partner for two years – a contract that will expire early this summer.Music Business Worldwide

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