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Napster acquired for Web3 fun

By | Published on Thursday 12 May 2022


Napster has been bought – again – for the second time in less than two years. It’s new owners, Hivemind and Algorand, are planning to adorn it with a load of Web3 stuff. Which, yes, means that the current iterations of Napster and LimeWire are now competitors in the Web3 space. What a strange world we live in.

Emmy Lovell has been appointed the new CEO of Napster. She was brought on last year as Chief Strategy Officer. So I guess we now know what her strategy was.

“Dear friends, we are excited to share that we’ve taken Napster Group private, and to bring the iconic music brand to web3”, wrote Hivemind CEO Matt Zhang on LinkedIn.

“Volatile market and uncertain times often bring exciting opportunities”, he went on. “At Hivemind, we believe in developing thesis and building enduring value. Music x Web3 is one of the most exciting spaces we’ve come across, and we are THRILLED to work with Emmy Lovell and many talents to unlock value for the entire ecosystem and revolutionise how artists and fans enjoy music”.

Napster was previously acquired by MelodyVR in August 2020. The plan was to merge the two brands under the Napster name and relaunch as a shiny new music streaming/virtual reality hybrid platform, although that ultimately did not happen.

The latest acquisition of Napster, and the plan to take it into the Web3 realm, follows the recent relaunch of LimeWire as an NFT marketplace. So that’s two brands best known for being used by famous piracy services now doing Web3 things in music.

If nothing else, that tells us that the people currently making moves on the burgeoning music Web3 space are probably all of a certain age. You can be as excited about the future as you like, but no one’s immune to the magnetic pull of nostalgia, eh?