· By Matej Harangozo
Square to buy 'significant majority ' stake in Jay Z's TIDAL for $297M
I don't know how Jay-Z does it, but this man is a great businessman. Always seems to come out on top, and he does it again by square purchasing Tidal or a majority stake in Tidal for two hundred ninety seven million dollars. So all my YouTube viewers, thanks so much for watching my videos. Please subscribe to the channel. Hit the notification icon as well so you can get my daily videos on various music industry or business topics. If you like this one comment. Let me know what you like about it or what you don't like about it. Feel free to hit that dislike button as well. I want you guys feedback. If you guys help me up, helps to grow my channel, then I can get more resources. These videos on a more frequent basis and it helps everybody. So thanks again for watching. And let's get into today's topic.
What's going on, guys, my name is Matej. Another day for MusicBizDaily. So let me break this story down because I have covered a bunch of stories about Tidal in the past. We had a whole episode on those on Tidal and some of their scandals. So yes, Tidal has gone through his ups and downs. And I think Jay-Z purchased Tidal from a Swedish company for around like fifty seven or sixty million dollars. Then he gave equity portion to a bunch of like notable artists, Kanye, Alicia Keys, Madonna even purchased in. I think Daft Punk was one of the shareholders, which they still are.
And then I think in 2018, it might have been or 17 a sprint, purchased a 200 million dollar stake in Tidal, which at the time worth thirty three percent of the company and also gave Tidal access to Sprint's 45 million, subscribers to Sprint's network and so on and so forth. So that was a huge deal. And I thought and a lot of people in the industry thought that, that was going to take Tidal to the next level. However, I think the scandals came after that, the streaming scandals and all of that. And look, as of today, Tidal has a very minuscule percentage of the entire streaming market in the U.S.
At least just probably like two percent or so. I mean another video about Spotify introducing the high five version of the streaming platform. Well, I'm a big fan of Tidal. It was a good platform. I mean, it's the one I had first of the streaming service myself. I had the high fi version for twenty dollars a month. Also because I'm a big fan of Jay-Z, his music was only available on Tidal at the time. So that's another reason why I kind of chose that as my paid streaming platform, even though I had the free Spotify version. But like I said, over time, Tidal has kind of lost its grip on the industry.
And it seemed like it was going to be one of Jay-Z's losing projects. However, this deal square. And if you guys know what square is, square pacemen Jack Dorsey. The thing is, it was one of the old co-founders of PayPal with Elon Musk. But anyways, square payments is, first of all, the little square you can put on top of your phones and pay through that. That square payment gateway is also huge for Shopify stores, ecommerce stores for bit commerce stores. So it's a major recognized payment gateway in the ecommerce world. And software world is also one of the first payment gateways that embrace the CBD industry, also embrace the cannabis industry in Canada and will in the US, which becomes federally illegal, so on and so forth.
So, you know, Square as a company is definitely the company to invest in. So Square is buying a majority stake in Tidal for two hundred and ninety seven million. It doesn't say, you know how much percentage, but a majority stake. It's probably at least 85 percent to maybe some 90 percent or whatever the case is, for two hundred ninety seven million. So you clearly see that when Sprint invested into the company, two hundred million for thirty three percent, that would have made the company tidal at the time worth six hundred million dollars. So it's nowhere near that if Square's pretty much purchasing the whole thing essentially for two hundred eighty seven.
But it doesn't matter because this is where the exciting part comes, at least in my opinion, is that Square, because it will be integrated with Tidal, they're going to be looking to provide new features for artists and help people get paid. One piece of credit I'll definitely give Tidal is that they give one of the highest payouts on streaming whenever they do pay out. Because we haven't gotten paid by Tidal through distrokid in some time. And the payments always been so finicky, but they do pay out the most. Almost a penny or close to a penny per stream for every stream.
So from that side, they do support artist. And besides that, the other majority are stakeholders in the company. But what Square is going to aim to do and it doesn't tell too many details but I think Square is going to enable artists through Tidal to maybe set up ecommerce stores to maybe set up payment modules where artists through Tidal can charge for their merchandise. Other services maybe streaming live. Maybe Tidal will become a streaming platform for artist full of concerts. Maybe Tidal will evolve into sort of like a quasi-ecommerce digital distribution streaming platform where you can distribute your music through it.
It's one of the platforms that people can listen to your music as they stream it if they're still on Tidal. And maybe it's going to be your ecommerce store one day. because Square, Square is also a website template company where essentially you can build a website on Square. So a technology company buying Tidal, which is also the technology sector if you want to think about the because of streaming, I think this will be the move that will save Tidal. And it'll it's not going to make it a direct competitor to Apple Music or Spotify.
But I think what it's going to evolve into from my knowledge of understanding, what Square does is going to again make it, is going to evolve it into a independent artists who are not only can they get their music and their video and maybe even live concerts and stream through their platform. But it'll enable the artists to get payments directly into their bank account from various other services, maybe something like Twitch, where people can tip you on twitch. Like I said, maybe it's going to be an ecommerce scenario where every artist that distribute their music through Tidal. They can pay monthly cost thirty dollars a month, forty dollars a month, so they can have the equivalent of a Shopify store directly through Tidal, which is going to be more optimized for music.
You know, your consumers and fans will be able to watch your videos, stream the music, purchase your merch, give you tips, maybe fundraisers, who knows. But I think there's definitely a good move for Jay-Z in considering that he bought it for fifty five million and then at one point it was worth 600 million and was going to be potentially the next biggest streaming platform. even though that didn’t happen, still sold it for a lot more. And I forgot to say Jay-Z's now going to be on the board of directors of Square as well. So this is what we know so far. But, you know, big shout out to Jay-Z. We respect what he does as a business man. One of our favorite entrepreneurs in the music industry.
And I think this may be the move that will save Tidal out of all of its scandals, the issues with non-payment and all the bs they had to deal with. And it's going to sort of transform it or evolve it into a more of a independent artist tool that's going to incorporate ecommerce, direct payments, Patreon type functionality, twitch type functionality, whatever the case is. so ill leave you with that. Let me know what you guys think in the comments about this merger and his move. Is always if you want to see what me and my team do, the link in the bio or the description below, depending on where you're watching this, share this video. Save it. I'll see you guys tomorrow for another day of MusicBizDaily.