CMU Digest

CMU Digest 06.03.17: Soundcloud, Spotify, Kickass, Secret Garden Party, Sunrise Records, Spinal Tap

By | Published on Monday 6 March 2017


The key stories from the last seven days in the music business…

Soundcloud unveiled a new mid-price version of its premium Go package. The new version of its premium service, priced at £5.99 in the UK, removes ads and offers extra functionality, but the 30 million tracks that are available on the current £9.99 service – and not on the free version of Soundcloud – are not automatically part of the mid-price deal. Content owners will be able to decide which packages they opt into. Soundcloud needs to crack the premium streaming market to assure its long-term future. [READ MORE]

Spotify confirmed that it now had 50 million paying users. It means the streaming service signed up its latest ten million subscribers slightly quicker than the last lot. The landmark was passed as social media firm Snapchat had a successful IPO on the New York Stock Exchange, which might make the streaming music company more bullish about its flotation, given Wall Street types still seem eager to invest in buzzy tech start-ups. [READ MORE]

A Polish court said that the founder of Kickass Torrents could be extradited to the US to face charges of copyright crimes. That said, a second court hearing and a government minister must now concur before extradition can actually occur, plus Artem Vaulin could still appeal the ruling. Nevertheless, the extradition process is moving much quicker than that targeting the former management of MegaUpload in New Zealand, who are also accused of copyright crimes by the US authorities. [READ MORE]

Organisers of The Secret Garden Party announced that this year’s edition would be the last. Founder Freddie Fellowes said: “We have never compromised our principles and we never will. What better way to honour the love that has been given to this project and wholly demonstrate this principle than finishing now?”. The final edition of SGP will take place from 20-23 Jul. [READ MORE]

Canadian independent music retailer Sunrise Records announced it intended to takeover 70 of HMV Canada’s stores. The Canadian division of HMV announced it was in receivership earlier this year, with all of its 100+ network of shops due to close by April. Sunrise – which currently runs ten stores – says it hopes it can succeed where HMV failed, partly by keeping overheads low. [READ MORE]

Vivendi submitted its response to the $400 million lawsuit being pursued against it by the four men behind ‘This Is Spinal Tap’. The entertainment firm – which controls the movie through its Studiocanal business and the soundtrack via its music company Universal – said the damages claim in the case was “absurd”, arguing that the plaintiffs hadn’t undertaken a proper audit and that their movie simply hadn’t been as profitable as they claimed. [READ MORE]

The big deals from the last seven days in the music business…
• Superstruct Entertainment invested in Spanish live firm Elrow [INFO]
• BMI and the US radio industry reached a deal on an interim rate [INFO]
• Warner and MediaCom announced a JV programme to support start-ups [INFO]
• BMG signed Avril Lavigne [INFO]
• Universal Music Publishing signed Zedd [INFO]
• Heavenly signed Confidence Man [INFO]

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