Taylor Swift's fight against digital streaming services over inadequate royalty payments hit the headlines last week after she removed all of her music from Spotify. But the popular streaming site's CEO, Daniel Ek, has now come forward to defend his company.

Taylor Swift
Swift removed all her music from Spotify last week

While voicing his disappointment at Swift's surprise career move, Ek posted a lengthy blog defending Spotify's business strategy on Tuesday (Nov 11th), claiming he co-founded the company in 2008 to fight against piracy, and has paid out $2 billion ever since.

More: Why Taylor Swift Refuses To Help Spotify's "Grand Experiment"

In the blog, titled "$2 Billion and Counting," Ek writes how piracy pays "nothing, zilch, and zero," to recording artists, but with Spotify the biggest stars in the music industry can earn royalties that "exceed $6 million a year."

Artists have argued that services like Spotify are putting CD sales at near-record lows, and the price they pay to acquire music from record labels and music publishers, a portion of which will end up with the singers, is far too cheap.

"Music is art, and art is important and rare," Swift wrote in June for the Wall Street Journal. "Important, rare things are valuable. Valuable things should be paid for."

More: Like Taylor Swift, Country Music Star Jason Aldean Removes New Album From Spotify

Spotify have since claimed nearly 70% of their revenue is paid directly back to rights holders in the form of royalty payments, but it only pays artists an average of "between $0.006 and $0.0084" per stream, according to the service's website.

Taylor Swift
Spotify's CEO claims artists like Swift could earn royalties that "exceed $6 million a year"

Furthermore, customers only pay $9.99 a month for the company's premium service, giving them access to all songs in the music library, and according to Spotify, 12.5 million of its 50 million users subscribe to the premium service.

Ek admitted if "money is not flowing to the creative community in a timely and transparent way," then there are issues to address. "We will do anything we can to work with the industry to increase transparency, improve speed of payments, and give artists the opportunity to promote themselves and connect with fans," he concluded.