Jay-Z to join Square’s board after acquisition of Tidal music service
Square, the company founded by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, has acquired Jay-Z’s Tidal music streaming service and will add the Grammy-winning artist to the company’s board of directors, it announced Thursday.
A statement on the company’s website indicated that the company had agreed to acquire Tidal for a mix of cash and stocks totaling $297 million, while Jay-Z and other artist-owners of Tidal will remain co-owners with minority stakes.
Dorsey said in a statement accompanying the news release that he was hoping to help support artists and build the “best home” for their work. Many major artists have spoken out against music streaming services such as Spotify, which some figures in the industry say doesn’t pay artists enough to allow millions to stream their songs or albums.
“It comes down to one simple idea: finding new ways for artists to support their work,” said Dorsey. “New ideas are found at intersections, and we believe there’s a compelling one between music and the economy. I knew TIDAL was something special as soon as I experienced it, and it will continue to be the best home for music, musicians, and culture.”
“I said from the beginning that TIDAL was about more than just streaming music, and six years later, it has remained a platform that supports artists at every point in their careers,” added Jay-Z in his own statement. “Artists deserve better tools to assist them in their creative journey. Jack and I have had many discussions about TIDAL’s endless possibilities that have made me even more inspired about its future.”
Text displayed in the Tidal app claims that the service is used by more than 3 million subscribers, though a report from a Norwegian newspaper investigated and accused the company of wildly inflating that number as recently as 2017.