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Music streaming service Pandora shuts down services for A/NZ

Reports state that Pandora is shutting down its operations in Australia and New Zealand.

This comes shortly after the resignation of Tim Westergren, Pandora’s CEO.

Jane Huxley, Pandora's managing director in Australia, also stepped down six months ago.

Reports state that despite this, the Australian branch of Pandora had signed a number of local deals during that time, thus news of the shutdown came as a surprise.

A Pandora spokesperson told Billboard, “After diligent analysis, we have decided to discontinue our operations in Australia and New Zealand and expect to wind down the service for listeners over the next few weeks.

“While our experience in these markets reinforces the broader global opportunity long-term, in the short-term we must remain focused on the expansion of our core business in the United States.”

Pandora has unfortunately been unable to keep up with its largest competitor Spotify, which has received 100 million subscribers over the past three years.  

Roger Faxon, Pandora board member says, “The board has taken various steps to refocus and reinforce the company over the last few weeks.

“Listeners continue to move from traditional terrestrial radio to more flexible offerings, it is the board’s belief that this transition continues to present a massive opportunity.”

“Pandora is in an ideal position to capture an increasing share of this audience.”

“With digital radio at the core of the Pandora business model, and its Premium offerings, the company has all of the tools necessary to capitalise on the opportunity.”

“With this comprehensive suite of offerings and a refortified balance sheet, we will be able to more effectively recruit listeners, and we will be able to provide them with more content.”

Pandora has seen a mere 10 million users over the past three years with markets in Australia and New Zealand being dominated by Spotify.

Pandora is not dead yet, as the company also announced a US$480 million investment from SiriusXM.

It will be an uphill battle for them to capture a larger audience, however.

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