Apple is on the verge of acquiring Shazam Entertainment, the parent company of music discovery app Shazam, for more than $400 million, according to a report from TechCrunch on Friday.
The deal for the app — best known for giving users song information within seconds of hearing the lyrics — could close as soon as Monday. The London-based company boasts more than 100 million monthly users, and hit one billion total downloads last year.
Reps for Apple and Shazam did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment.
Shazam has raised more than $140 million from investors, including Universal Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment, since it was founded in 1999. (In the pre-app days, you needed to send a text to Shazam to get song details.) But the approximately $400 million deal comes in below its more than $1 billion valuation the company received from Pitchbook after its latest financing round in 2015.
The buyout would cement an already cozy relationship between the two companies, with Shazam letting buy songs on Apple Music once they’ve been pinpointed. Shazam has bolstered its features since debuting on the App Store in 2008, now allowing users to identify content on TV, and adding augmented reality marketing for brands.
6 Tech Giants Shaking Up News, From Jeff Bezos to Laurene Powell Jobs (Photos)
Tech leaders are increasingly intertwined with the news business. While some want to support old properties, one set out to destroy a new one. Here they are.
Jeff Bezos – Washington Post
The Amazon founder purchased the Washington Post in 2013 for $250 million in cash. President Trump has called the paper the “Amazon Washington Post.”
The Facebook co-founder purchased The New Republic in 2012, becoming executive chairman and publisher. However, he sold the venerable political magazine to Win McCormack in 2016, saying he "underestimated the difficulty of transitioning an old and traditional institution into a digital media company in today’s quickly evolving climate."
The eBay founder is a well-known philanthropist who created First Look Media, a journalism venture behind The Intercept. Inspired by Edward Snowden's leaks. Omidyar teamed up with journalists Glenn Greenwald, Jeremy Scahill and Laura Poitras to launch the website “dedicated to the kind of reporting those disclosures required: fearless, adversarial journalism.”
The PayPal co-founder doesn’t own a news organization, but he makes this list because he essentially ended one -- Gawker -- proving once again the power of an angry billionaire. Thiel secretly bankrolled Hulk Hogan’s sex-tape lawsuit against Gawker Media because he was upset that the website once outed him as gay. Hogan won the defamation lawsuit against the site that sent its parent company into bankruptcy, and Gawker.com is no longer operating.
OK, so Facebook isn’t technically a news organization… yet. However, the company is preparing to launch its much-anticipated lineup of original content later this summer, and there are also signs that it's on the verge of becoming an even bigger media platform.
Campbell Brown, Head of News Partnerships at Facebook, confirmed last week it’s developing a subscription service for publishers willing to post articles directly to Facebook Instant Articles, rather than their native websites.