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Playing a gig to 10m in Fortnite

This week we have seven stories including the biggest ever event in Fortnite, the rise of subscription retail, Spotify’s new focus on podcasts, and what the Super Bowl did to Netflix.

 

This week's top stories...

 

DJ Marshmello plays to 10m people in Fortnite
Last weekend the video game Fortnite hosted a gig by Marshmallo, with over 10m people attending in avatar form.  You can see a clip on YouTube, and the full set is available exclusively on Apple Music. Fortnight has over 200m registered players, and generated over $300m in revenue *a month*.  
Clearly a very big deal, and another example of Chinese media that is big globally

 

Unilever has bought Graze, the snacks company
Graze is very famous among office workers in London; there always seems to be someone you share a mailroom pigeon hole with who subscribes to their snacks.  Now Unilever has bought them, giving credibility to the direct to consumer and subscription retail models.

 

P&G has bought This is L, the women’s sanitary products company
This seems like a natural fit - This is L started off as mail order, but is now in thousands of stores. There will be lots of synergies with P&G’s business, and they get to work with some very smart entrepreneurs.  
We will see many more subscription-based start-ups.

 

Ikea is trialling a subscription model
This model is more like rental than purchase, but it lets people take possession of furniture with the option to return it when they don’t need it anymore (e.g. moving house), or when they fancy a change.  Ikea then takes it back and reconditions it, extending its life.  This seems very smart, and very in keeping with modern lifestyles. 

 

Spotify has bought podcast producer Gimlet
Spotify is ramping up its podcast content by buying Gimlet, which makes shows like Start Up and ReplyAll.  It’s a recognition that music fans don’t only want to listen to music, so being able to offer a good range of podcasts is likely to keep people on the platform for longer.  It’s also very likely that this will improve Spotify’s targeting - knowing what podcasts a person likes arguably tells you more about them than what music they like.  
But then there is the issue of advertising.  This BBC article thinks that this will bring targeted ads to podcasts, based on Spotify’s knowledge of its signed in users, but it doesn’t seem to be clear if they premium Spotify users will get targeted ads in their podcasts.

 

Insights into kids’ media use in the UK
Based on interviews with about 400 kids a week, Kids Insights sees a levelling off for YouTube as kids turn to more mobile native services like TikTok.  They also say that about 20% of kids have access to a smart speaker, and that retail is becoming more important as a place to hang out for teens, as they are getting more autonomy over their own spending.

 

& finally - even though the Super Bowl had the lowest ratings for years, it hit Netflix
One sign of the Super Bowl’s continuing popularity is its impact on Netflix.  Even though it didn’t break any records for viewing it still got 100m people watching in the US - and this resulted in a 32% drop in Netflix viewing compared to a normal Sunday.