Jack Dorsey’s Square, Inc. is buying a majority stake in Jay-Z’s streaming service Tidal
Square got a lot of people to do double takes this morning by announcing that it is acquiring quote a significant majority stake in jay z's streaming music service title for two hundred and ninety seven million dollars. Jay z will also join squares board of directors quoting the new york times title which jay z bought in partnership with other artists. In two thousand. Fifteen for fifty. Six million dollars provides members access to music music videos and exclusive content from artists but the streaming music industry has been dominated by competitors like spotify apple and amazon in two thousand seventeen. Jay z sold thirty three percent of the company to sprint for an undisclosed amount after merger sprint is now a part of t mobile earlier this week. Jay z bought back the shares from t mobile and most will be sold onto square as part of this deal. Mr dorsey and jay z began to discuss the acquisition quote. A few months ago said jesse deroga- a sect who will lead title on an interim basis. It started as a conversation between the two of them. He said they found that sense of common. Purpose and quote. Mr dora guscott said square which was founded in two thousand nine will offer financial tools to help titles artists collect revenue and manage their finances quote. There are other tools. They need to be successful and that we're going to build for them. He said and quote so this is one of those stories where the speculation and chatter around. It is almost as interesting as the news itself. I of course you've got the celebrity angle. Jay z and jack dorsey. It actually turns out that they are good buds. They vacation together. You might have seen those yacht pictures from the paparazzi okay but square a payments company and title a music streaming service of somewhat dubious success. How does a tie between them. Make any kind of sense. Here's what jack dorsey himself had to say. Quote it comes down to a simple idea finding new ways for to support their work. New ideas are found at the intersections. And we believe there is a compelling one between music and the economy making the economy work for artists is similar to what square has done for sellers square start at twelve years ago by giving small sellers a simple tool in order to participate more fully in the economy and grow. We did the same for individuals with cash app which now enables a comprehensive set of financial services for folks who weren't able to access it before title started with the idea of honoring artists by being owned and led focused on an uncompromised experience of the art. It's refreshing and right. The vision only grow stronger as it's matched with more powerful tools for artists inclusive of new ways of getting paid given what square has been able to do for sellers of all sizes and individuals through cash app. We believe we can now work for artists to see the same success for them and us. We're going to start small and focus with the most critical needs of artists and growing their fan bases and quote. So he doesn't exactly say it there but everyone is reading between the lines looking around at this current. Nfc madness. and remembering though. I didn't tell you about this. That jack dorsey and jay z recently announced. They were creating an endowment with five hundred. Bitcoin's worth twenty three million dollars plus two teams working on bitcoin development initially in africa and india. And so everyone's thinking. This is a crypto play as peter kaku tweeted quote. I would be surprised if there wasn't an nf story. Here that fits the jack story and seems to be what he's hinting at in his tweets. But again you don't need to own title to sell jay z's and tease this would be weird if square was buying a music streaming service that people actually used but it's much weirder. It's a publicly traded. Financial services company. Buying a failed music streaming company. I guess square shareholders won't complain because they've already signed on for the jack dorsey experience but whatever awesome artists and square story. Jack is promising here. Doesn't require a three hundred million dollar payout. To jay z quote. Other people can see other angles. Here let me give you some counter takes. This is jason delray quote. Plenty of people on the square. Buying title is dumb side. But i'll be on the other end. Could it be a mistake. Sure is the deal relationship based sure. Many are but squares incredible things for small merchants and for everyday people with cash so why not artists and quote. This is scott belsky quote for a big company to create an entirely new center of gravity inside it. You need a forcing function with this lens. And the growing need to outfit the creator economy with financial tools. This seems a logical step for square and quote. This is dr sanjay quote square acquiring title to focus on new ways for artists. Monetize is going to be seen as the watershed moment of the creator economy. We're tilting away. From platforms capturing all the value to the people creating the content doing so directly for fans or indirectly via ads and quote and finally turner. Novak goes really really wild but then it doesn't actually seem all that wild when you say it out loud and then think about it especially when you see the products that twitter has been building out lately. Newsletters spaces quote jacqueline so deep into the crater economy with twitter. The past six months it leaked into square a great acquisition. That will ten acts everything square has been doing with consumer user acquisition. Not outrageous to think he merges square and twitter at some point and quote.