Spotify are celebrating the addition of two new publishing partners for audiobooks on their platform, though tension surrounding the content continues.

Spotify have added Bonnier Books UK and Blackstone Publishing to their partners. These two new book publishers will be working with Spotify to add their libraries of audiobooks to Spotify’s Premium tier.

Last year, Spotify added 15 hours of audiobook listening to their Premium tier. Their new partnerships will bring titles such as ‘The Beekeeper of Aleppo’ by Christie Lefteri and ‘Audacity’ by Katherine Ryan and Whoopi Goldberg’s new memoir ‘Bits and Pieces: My Mother, My Brother, and Me’.

Spotify’s Director of Audiobook Partnerships & Licensing, Duncan Bruce says: “We want Spotify to be the best place for authors and publishers to get their books heard, and to bring great audio stories to as many people as possible. Our partnerships with Blackstone Publishing and Bonnier Books UK make this a possibility with access to our global audience of more than 615 million users.”

Bruce adds: “Since launching Audiobooks in Premium, we’re seeing success with bestsellers, but back catalog titles are also gaining popularity, with 14 of the top 50 Audiobooks in Premium titles having been released before 2020.”

Spotify are currently facing controversy over the addition of audiobooks to their platform. A recent change to their licensing sees them paying less to music publishers who pay songwriters. This is down to the fact that their cost of subscription now classifies as a “bundle” featuring both music and audiobooks.

Spotify have faced criticism from a number of industry figures. The Mechanical Licensing Collective are even bringing a lawsuit against Spotify, claiming that the change to their classification of Premium is “at odds with the section 115 regulations”. Spotify have responded, saying that they are working to terms “that publishers and streaming services agreed to and celebrated years ago”.