Apple Inc. (AAPL) appointed Oliver Schusser as Vice President of Apple Music and international content. He will be in charge of Apple’s international services, including App Store and iTunes, and will report to Senior Vice President Eddy Cue. Schusser, who played a major part in the Shazam acquisition, will relocate to California from London and will split his time between Cupertino and Culver City.
Apple Music has 48 million subscribers, 40 million of whom pay for the service while the remaining 8 million are on a free trial. Its main rival, Spotify, which went public this month, has a total monthly user base of 157 million, out of which 71 million are paid users.
Apple Music, along with iCloud and the App Store, are part of Apple’s services business which is becoming more vital for the company owing to the slow sales growth of the iPhone. Schusser was responsible for expanding the services business in 155 international markets such as Latin America, Japan and China.
Apple wants to double its software and services revenue by 2020 and Schusser is likely to have a big role to play in this goal. He will now be responsible for Apple’s music and TV operations as well as its efforts in artificial intelligence, and could give the company’s media strategy a much-needed boost. Schusser’s capabilities will prove useful as Apple deals with competitors like Netflix (NFLX) in the entertainment content field.
Jimmy Iovine will be moving into a consulting role at Apple and Oliver Schusser’s appointment does not impact Iovine’s position in any way.