Jay-Z Acquires Controlling Stake in High-Quality Music-Streaming Company - The UpStream

Jay-Z Acquires Controlling Stake in High-Quality Music-Streaming Company

posted Sunday Mar 22, 2015 by Nicholas DiMeo

Hip-hop and business mogul Jay-Z has been known to put his heavily-wealthy hands into a lot of different types of endeavors. He owns clubs, fitness centers, a sports management team and even a basketball team. But now, Mr. Carter had looked towards a music service company that is poised to rival Spotify.

Jay-Z has placed a $56 million bid in order to buy a controlling stake in Swedish technology company Aspiro. Aspiro might be best recognized in the United States for its two streaming companies, WiMP and Tidal. The offer was made in January underneath Project Panther Bidco, a holding entity that he owns. The offer to acquire was made in January, with shareholders having until this week to approve, and over 90 percent approved of the deal.

The important acquisition for Jay-Z is Tidal, which is a high-fidelity music-streaming service. It's not only made for the audiophile, but is made for anyone who has a nice set of headphones or other top audio equipment. Most recently, Jay-Z has been involved in production work for musical scores and soundtracks, so his interest in a platform that can offer higher-quality audio files is certainly justifiable. Not only does Tidal serve up better quality music, but WiMP also offers up a high-definition subscription package. 20,000 of its 512,000 paying customers have signed up for the premium service.

A spokesperson for Project Panther finalized the deal in a statement.

All conditions for completion of the offer have been fulfilled, and the offer is therefore declared unconditional. Accordingly, Panther will complete the acquisition of the shares tendered in the offer.

Aspiro will also be removed from the Nasdaq Stockholm. Jay-Z added to the announcement by saying, "Panther's strategic ambition revolves around global expansion and upscaling of Aspiro's platform, technology and services." Beyond that, Mr. Carter has not mentioned his plans for Aspiro. WiMP and Tidal moving forward.

In the end, more and more consumers are seeking higher-quality audio files for their higher-quality headphones, and many want to take that music on the go. Those files, however, take up a lot more space, allowing less music to be carried with you. Cue the latest entrance of applications like Tidal, Deezer and Pono.

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