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Spotify Names New Head of P.R. in Advance of Public Offering

In advance of long-anticipated Spotify’s public offering — which is now expected in the first quarter of 2018 — the company has brought in a new head of public relations: Dustee Jenkins, who until recently held a similar role at Target. The move, which was first reported by Recode, was confirmed to Variety by a rep for Spotify.

Jenkins’ appointment is seen as an effort to streamline the company’s PR and messaging in advance of the public offering: she will report to chief marketing officer Seth Farbman, while veteran company publicist Graham James in New York and Angela Watts in London will report to her. Jenkins will relocate to New York from Target’s Minneapolis headquarters. She served with the company for seven years, vacating in July. Previously she held communications roles with Hill & Knowlton PR consulting agency, with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development under president George W. Bush, and with Texas Republican Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison.

Spotify, the world’s largest streaming service, passed 140 million worldwide users as both its revenue and operating loss grew significantly in 2016, according to the company’s annual financial statement released in June. The company announced in July that it had passed 60 million paying subscribers. Its closest competitor in the streaming market, Apple Music, announced in September that it had passed the 30-million subscriber mark.

Rather than a traditional IPO, Spotify is expected to launch a public offering, whereby it will list shares directly to buyers. The move has been anticipated for several years but has been delayed as the company shores itself up, not least by closing new licensing deals with the three major labels and the independent label collective Merlin; it completed the last of those, with Warner Music, in August.

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