Google announced this morning that Google Play Music is launching in five new European countries: Austria, Belgium, Ireland, Luxembourg and Portugal.
"Music first launched on Google Play in Europe in November 2012, and the fast rollout to more countries today is due to the multi-territorial licensing process, as recommended by the European Commission last year," explains Google Play head of international music partnerships, Sami Valkonen. "We have 14 multi-territorial licenses for composition rights covering Europe and representing the vast majority of the world’s music, and have recently welcomed the members of AKM/AUME in Austria, SABAM in Belgium, SPA in Portugal, and IMRO in Ireland into our growing list of author’s society partners."
Google is also launching Artist Hub in these countries. This is a platform for independent musicians to sell their music directly to fans. This is discussed a bit more here.
In addition to the five new countries, Google Play Music is available in the following European countries: the UK, Germany, France, Spain and Italy.