Blogs are reporting that Google may be in negotiations with SoundCloud in regards to purchasing the streaming platform. Amidst SoundCloud’s strategy to monetize their service, they apparently have been courting some buyers as well. If you’ve been paying much attention, you know that they were recently in talks with Spotify too, but those negotiations fell through pretty quickly after SoundCloud put a price tag on themselves of about $1 billion. This was the same price tag that scared off Twitter in buying the platform back in 2014. Even though revenue with SoundCloud is growing, they reportedly took heavy losses in 2015 that have measured up to $51 million (who actually uses SoundCloud Go, anyway?). The Google negotiations are reported by Music Business Worldwide to be coming in at around $500 million, a hefty cut in price.
The Music Business Worldwide report also revealed that major labels Sony, Universal and Warner (some of which had pulled music from the platform before reaching agreements) have ownership stakes in SoundCloud. If Google were to make the $500 million purchase, the major labels would get a cut of around $45 million. There could be some major changes coming to music streaming in 2017. MBW has also reported that there are rumors of Pandora being purchased by Sirius XM.
Some users may dread the idea of a corporate monster like Google coming in and taking over SoundCloud, but to me, honestly, it doesn’t sound like such a bad idea. SoundCloud seems like it keeps getting worse and worse each year, for artists and listeners, so perhaps it’s about time that it shifts leadership to try something else. It will be interesting to see how, or if, they will merge their own streaming service, Google Play, with Soundcloud.