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Son of a single mother, Daniel Ek, grew up in Rågsved in Stockholm. From the team, he began to develop his knowledge in IT to create companies to produce cheaper websites for various commercial activities, using his colleagues as employees.
In 1999, at the age of 16, he looked for work at Google, which by then was a completely new company. Ek received in response a "come back when you have a higher degree." Feeling frustrated, he decided to compete against them and create his search engine, even better. Unable to understand how to develop this task, he published his work on the Internet and invited others to contribute through open source. In the end, this work would become part of Yahoo's Finance system.
In 2002, Daniel Ek graduated from IT-Gymnasiet at Sundbyberg in 2002. He spent two months in engineering in the KTH area, before deciding to start doing IT work based on his knowledge and experience.
Once graduated, Daniel Ek worked for Tradedoubler for, and in 2006 he was able to earn an income from his work of several million Swedish kronor.
Daniel Ek also worked as a CTO at Jajja Communications AB, CTO at Stardoll, and was CEO of µTorrent.
Ek was interested in music, so he planned to invest in creating a track as a professional musician. However, he discovered that the music industry had a negative economic development, so he realized that downloading more and more music for free over the Internet instead of buying records would end this industry.
Inspired by the previously acclaimed pirate music exchange service from Napster, Ek thought of a solution for music distribution. In 2006 he began to develop a solution with Martin Lorentzon to create a music transmission company over the Internet.
From the beginning, the idea was to bring together the big record companies as partners. After lengthy negotiations, they managed to fulfill this plan, and in 2008 they launched the service for music clients in Sweden and Europe. After lengthy negotiations and delays, and with a new collaboration with, among others, Facebook partner and Napster founder Sean Parker, in the summer of 2011, Spotify was launched in North America.