Apple’s Platoon acquisition is about the much-bigger picture

The news broke on Friday morning that Apple has acquired British artist-services startup Platoon. The company is best known for working at an early stage with emerging artists – including Jorja Smith, Billie Eilish and Stefflon Don – before they move on to traditional-label (or in the case of Smith, distribution) deals. “The Apple deal gives […]

Report suggests Liberty Media is eyeing up iHeartMedia

US media group iHeartMedia – which includes radio-streaming service iHeartRadio – filed for bankruptcy earlier this year, and has since been plotting a path to reduce its debts and exit Chapter 11 bankruptcy. This week, the company announced that it has agreed a deal with creditors to reduce its debts by around $10.3bn to $5.75bn, while separating […]

Confirmed: Apple has bought music analytics startup Asaii

Music-analytics startup Asaii is shutting down this month because it has been acquired by Apple. The deal has been confirmed to Music Ally by the company’s first investor. “As the first investors in Asaii, we are incredibly excited by their recent acquisition by Apple where they will have the opportunity to dramatically scale their impact […]

Euro songwriters body comes out against Sony / EMI deal

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) is the latest industry body to come out against Sony’s plan to take full control of EMI Music Publishing. The deal has been ‘notified’ to the European Commission, which will now decide if it merits further investigation on competition grounds. ECSA follows IMPALA and BASCA in calling for […]

Analysts give their views on SiriusXM / Pandora acquisition

Analysts have been publishing their views on the implications of SiriusXM’s proposed acquisition of Pandora, and it’s fair to say many of them are taking a wait-and-see approach. Goldman Sachs highlighted the ‘go-shop’ provision in the deal that allows Pandora to seek out a better offer, and suggests that “the value of Pandora as an […]

Apple to take Shazam ad-free after completing app acquisition

Shortly after receiving approval of the deal from the European Commission, Apple has completed its acquisition of music-recognition app Shazam. Its first move: to announce that the app will “soon offer its experience ad-free for all users so everyone can enjoy the best of Shazam without interruption”. This, of course, includes ads from streaming services that aren’t […]

SiriusXM to buy Pandora: ‘We would benefit from a free funnel’

By now you’ll likely know that US satellite-radio firm SiriusXM has announced plans to buy streaming service Pandora, in a transaction valuing the latter company at $3.5bn. The deal follows SiriusXM’s $480m strategic investment in Pandora in 2017, which had seen its chairman, CEO and CFO appointed to Pandora’s board of directors. SiriusXM says that […]

Canadian collecting society Socan acquires Sodrac

Socan is getting its wallet out again: this time the collecting society has closed its acquisition of fellow Canadian organisation Sodrac (the Society for Reproduction Rights of Authors, Composers and Publishers). Socan is bullish about what the deal means for creators. “For the first time in Canada, a single organisation – Socan – will be […]

Blockchain startup Tron buys BitTorrent for reported $126m

BitTorrent (the company) has a new owner: blockchain firm Tron, which bills itself as “the world’s largest decentralised ecosystem”. BitTorrent confirmed the acquisition on its site, noting that its products have more than 100 million active users worldwide, and that it will now “provide robust support for Tron’s global business development and partnerships”. Variety cites financial filings suggesting […]

Fitness firm Peloton buys B2B music startup Neurotic Media

Peloton is one of the highly-valued startups trying to apply technology to the area of fitness, with livestreamed classes that people can pedal along with at home on the company’s customised exercise-bike and app. In May 2017, its last funding round ($325m) valued the company at $1.25bn, making it the latest Silicon Valley ‘unicorn’. Anyway, it’s […]

A&R’s data moment: Sodatone acquisition and Instrumental funding

Two separate announcements yesterday highlight the fact that big-data and machine-learning for A&R purposes are enjoying a bit of a moment – after years of being mostly seen as a controversial niche when they cropped up in the on-stage conversations at industry conferences. Music Ally has been to countless panel sessions where A&R veterans scoffed […]

Reliance claims $1bn valuation for Saavn and JioMusic merger

Indian telco Reliance Industries is merging its own music-streaming service JioMusic with independent player Saavn, in a deal that it says values the merged entity at more than $1bn. It’s promising that the resulting business will offer “global reach, cross-border original content, an independent artist marketplace, consolidated data and one of the largest mobile advertising […]

Music-making firm Splice buys remix-contest site Indaba

There is more consolidation afoot in the digital music-making space, following the news earlier this month that BandLab was buying Gibson’s Cakewalk division. Now one of its rivals, Splice, has snapped up veteran remix-contests site Indaba Music for an undisclosed amount. “Over the years, Indaba has connected its community of musicians to over a thousand […]

European Commission to assess Apple’s Shazam acquisition

Apple announced plans to acquire music-recognition firm Shazam in December 2017, but European regulators may yet throw a spoke in the works of the deal. “The European Commission has accepted a request from Austria, France, Iceland, Italy, Norway, Spain and Sweden to assess under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Shazam by Apple,” […]

CD Baby’s parent company buys AdRev and DashGo

The parent company of distributor CD Baby has executed a mini-rollup of B2B services. AVL Digital Group has acquired AudioMicro, which in turn owns YouTube-monetisation tool AdRev and label-services provider DashGo, as well as its own sync-licensing platform. The intention here is to offer AudioMicro’s services as part of CD Baby’s package for artists and […]

Apple has bought an augmented-reality headset startup

Sorry, the rumours about Apple making an AR headset and/or smart glasses are going to keep on coming until the company actually makes one. At least there’s some concrete fact to the latest story: Apple has acquired a startup called Vrvana that was making an AR headset called the Totem. TechCrunch claims that the acquisition […]

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