March 19, 2012:Deezer gets browser-based offline mode, snipes at Spotify

Deezer boss Axel Dauchez took to the stage at the London Web Summit this afternoon to talk about the company’s streaming music business.

“We have 20m users, around 7-8m per month, and we have 1.4m paying users,” he said, explaining that Deezer is focused on Europe and emerging markets for the forseeable future. The company currently has 15m tracks in its catalogue. “The crucial point is to have the right catalogue in the right country,” said Dauchez.

Dauchez was asked about competition from Spotify, which now has more than 3m paying users and a higher profile in the media.

“In terms of corporate communications, Spotify has done an absolutely wonderful job. We are mainly focused on the product,” he said, before suggesting that Deezer has more chance of striking global partnerships with Facebook, device makers and operators as it continues its ambitious rollout. “Our strategy is to work on the ground, not only to work on the press.”

In the UK, Deezer is currently signing up between 20,000 and 30,000 paying subscribers a month, thanks to its partnership with Orange – one of its investors. Talking of which, Dauchez refused to confirm rumours that Deezer is seeking up to $100m of new funding. “It’s a big rumour… I think we should keep it as a rumour,” he said.

Dauchez also said that Deezer is working well with music industry rightsholders. “For the first time ever we negotiated blanket licences worldwide with them. It’s a sign that their world is changing.”

And finally an announcement, of sorts. “Today we launched on Chrome the ability to run what we call the offline mode directly through the browser,” said Dauchez. So offline cacheing through Deezer’s browser-based site – a feature that’s been lacking before, compared to desktop clients like Spotify.


Stuart Dredge
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