Hearing the Rise of Audiobook Streaming Services
By Arkus Fredriksson
In a world increasingly shifted towards the instantaneous benefits of unlimited streaming services such as Netflix and Spotify, one rising Swedish company is aspiring to become a global digital media giant. Storytel is an online audiobook streaming service that utilizes a digital subscription service to grant its users access to an immense library of audiobooks through collaborations with large publishers.
In 2005, current CEO Jonas Tellander and Head Developer Jon Hauksson founded the company with its original name, BOKiLUR (book in receiver), before changing the name to Storytel in 2007. The name change arrived in part due to the company’s adopting of a more internationally accessible brand as it gears up for further expansion past its current markets in Northern Europe.
Storytel combines two facets of operations for its business: streaming and publishing. Not only does Storytel provide a platform for authors to share their audiobooks with a wide audience, but the company also allows authors to publish audiobooks through partnerships with publishing companies such as Storyside in Sweden and Rubinstein Audio in Holland. Storytel has also expanded its publishing businessprospects through its recent acquisition of Norstedts, a nearly 200-year-old Swedish publishing company. The publishing aspect of the business showcases the strong potential of the company’s services.
Photo credits: Storytel Sweden AB
Through partnerships with audiobook publishers, Storytel’s library is flourishing with thousands of titles, giving users access to nearly every book imaginable. In each of Storytel’s countries of operation, the company has secured partnerships with existing publishers to ensure that the audiobooks are available in suitable languages for its users. Recent developments at Storytel include its launch of the famous Harry Potter books and the addition of Arabic into its language arsenal.
In 2016, Storytel’s revenue grew by 65%, with a 42% growth rate in Sweden, and 106% abroad. Stoytel is currently publicly listed on AktieTorget, a marketplace that gives entrepreneur-led companies access to growth capital. With this funding,Storytel is experiencing a period of expansive growth as it improves the efficacy of its core business lines and looks towards new markets.
With recent acquisitions and developments, in addition to strong growth in revenue and user base, Storytel is an exciting company to follow as it continues expansion into new and existing markets.