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Apple not looking to buy Tidal, though Spotify could go to Facebook (but probably won’t)

By | Published on Monday 19 September 2016


Apple isn’t going to buy Tidal, but Spotify could sell to Facebook. Please update your wallcharts accordingly.

After much speculation that Jay-Z was about to get shot of Tidal – which is making massive losses and struggling to pay creditors – by selling it to Apple, Jimmy Iovine has now said that this is not the case.

In an interview with Buzzfeed, he didn’t deny that talks had taken place with the Tidallers, but he said that Apple isn’t interested in buying any more streaming services. Iovine, of course, joined Apple through its purchase of his Beats company, with its Dre-tastic headphones and a then fledgling streaming platform.

“We’re really running our own race”, he said. “We’re not looking to acquire any streaming services”. Which is usually what people in Iovine’s position say just before they acquire a streaming service. But you know, we’d never doubt Jim. So that’s that, there’ll be no Tidal wave of Apples.

Meanwhile, Joakim Dal, an analyst at British investment firm GP Bullhound, which has money in Spotify, reckons that while an initial public offering is still the most likely outcome for the streaming company, we shouldn’t rule out the possibility of it actually being bought outright by Facebook. So there’s that rumour back on the table.

“Historically, Spotify has been weak on building a social network around their service”, Dal told Breakit. “Therefore, a deal with Facebook would be positive. It would further increase [Spotify’s] competitive upper hand against Apple, who don’t have any social network tied to their service. Daniel Ek and Mark Zuckerberg know each other well and if Facebook develops any new product, a music offering is very likely”.

Of course, that would really go against what Daniel Ek said earlier this year at the Brilliant Minds symposium, where he resolutely told journalists: “I’m not going to sell, no. My selfish ambition with Spotify is just trying to show … that we can create one of those super companies here in Europe”.

Selling to Facebook wouldn’t really fit with that plan at all, would it? But, of course, everyone has their price. Especially if they have investors demanding the best possible return on what they put in as soon as possible thanks very much. So the hell knows?