(TIML NEWS) Sprint has acquired a 33 percent stake in Jay Z’s streaming service Tidal, the two companies announced today (Jan. 23). A source familiar with the matter tells Billboard that the purchase was for $200 million and that Jay and each of the company’s two dozen artist-owners will remain part owners.
As part of the deal, Tidal will become available to Sprint’s 45 million retail customers, while the companies will partner for exclusives from its artists, according to a press release. Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure joins Tidal’s board of directors.
“Jay saw not only a business need, but a cultural one, and put his heart and grit into building TIDAL into a world-class music streaming platform that is unrivaled in quality and content,” Claure said in a statement. “The passion and dedication that these artist-owners bring to fans will enable Sprint to offer new and existing customers access to exclusive content and entertainment experiences in a way no other service can.”
Tidal’s and Sprint’s relationship dates back to the March 2015 U.S. launch of the company as indicated that Sprint had acquired a stake in the company. At the time, Sprint walked back any formal deal, only alluding to negotiations “to determine how to best to make the service available to its customers… We are working together in partnership for the vision of the common cause of reestablishing the value of music, it is NOT a financial investment or exclusive partnership.”