Thursday, June 21, 2018

Streaming audio service TuneIn mulls sale | Music Business Worldwide

Online radio service TuneIn is exploring a possible sale after enlisting global investment firm Liontree Advisors to help it explore strategic options.

The firm was valued at $500 million after raising $50m last year to fund programming for its paid service but will be willing to sell for less, according to Bloomberg sources.

After first arriving in 2002 as a free service offering radio stations online, San Francisco-born TuneIn has focused on building out its paid tier in recent years that hosts ad-free music stations and live sports broadcasts.

According to CEO John Donham, it has less than 10 million subscribers for its $9.99 a month tier, while rival Pandora has 6m and Sirius XM has over 30m.

TuneIn has yet to turn a profit, said Donham, and has raised $140m in investment to date.

In October, former SoundCloud CFO and Google exec Holly Lim was hired as Chief Financial Officer to oversee finance, legal, HR, workplace and corporate development.

In the UK, the company landed in hot water last year after being accused of copyright infringement by Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Music Group.

Our sources told us that the pair of majors have issued proceedings in the UK High Court against TuneIn, alleging that the digital music platform has breached copyright laws.

A legal document seen by one MBW source suggests that the majors have submitted evidence which they claim shows a sample of 800 unlicensed TuneIn music streams in the UK.

The IFPI is understood to be involved in the day-to-day litigation process for both majors, which is being brought about by their UK companies.

Music Business Worldwide


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