Daniel Ek
Courtesy of Spotify



Founder / CEO / Chairman

Ek has solidified Spotify’s status as the dominant audio-streaming platform, spearheading $834 million in acquisitions, including live sports discussion app Locker Room and podcast platform Megaphone, and signing talent ranging from TikTok dancer Addison Rae to top podcaster Joe Rogan, who closed a multiyear licensing deal with the company in May 2020 worth a reported $100 million. His moves have helped the company attract 345 million active users and achieve a valuation north of $70 billion. Along the way, the Swedish native has amassed a personal fortune of a reported $3.8 billion, and he’s not shy about spending it, pledging $1 billion over the next decade to fund European tech startups and making a £1.8 billion bid to buy Islington, England-based soccer club Arsenal F.C. in May 2021.


  • Spotify
  • Advertigo
  • Stardoll


  • Royal Institute of Technology (Sweden)

Variety Honors

  • 2017 Variety500 Honoree
  • 2018 Variety500 Honoree
  • 2019 Variety500 Honoree
  • 2020 Variety500 Honoree
  • Digital Entertainment Impact/Digital Execs


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News from Variety

Spotify’s Daniel Ek Slams Apple for ‘Anticompetitive’ Practices in Berlin Speech

Spotify’s Daniel Ek Slams Apple for ‘Anticompetitive’ Practices in Berlin Speech

Spotify CEO and cofounder Daniel Ek doubled down on his company’s criticism of Apple for what it says are “anticompetitive” practices on its app store during a speech Thursday at the International Conference on Competition in Berlin. Spotify filed an official complaint with the European Commission against Apple in Europe on Wednesday, contending that the company unfairly limits choice and competition through the rules of its app store.“It’s fairly widely known that Steve Jobs initially wanted only Apple content on...


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