Square buying streaming music service Tidal in $297 million deal

in General Discussion
Square, primarily known for creating mobile payment hardware, will pay $297 million in a mix of cash and stock to buy Jay-Z's music streaming service, Tidal.

According to Jack Dorsey, Square's CEO, the move was done to help artists support their work, similar to how Square and Cash App gave "small sellers a simple tool to participate more fully in the economy and grow."

Square is acquiring a majority ownership stake in TIDAL through a new joint venture, with the original artists becoming the second largest group of shareholders, and JAY-Z joining the Square board. Why would a music streaming company and a financial services company join forces?!

-- jack (@jack)

"Square created ecosystems of tools for sellers & individuals, and we'll do the same for artists," Dorsey tweeted. "We'll work on entirely new listening experiences to bring fans closer together, simple integrations for merch sales, modern collaboration tools, and new complementary revenue streams."

Jay-Z, who purchased Tidal for $56 million in 2015, will join the Square board of directors. The rapper-turned-business mogul will "help lead [Square's] entire company, including Seller and the Cash App, as soon as the deal closes."

Dorsey states that the acquisition should be seen as a boon for artists and that the company will focus on artists and their needs. Tidal is set to receive several significant updates, including new listening experiences, merchandise integrations, collaborative tools, and new revenue streams.

Tidal is known for bringing high-fidelity music streaming to fans. In 2020, Tidal brought Atmos Music to the Apple TV 4K, soundbars, and select smart televisions, and "master"-level audio quality to the iPhone and iPad in 2019.

In 2018, Square launched the "Square Terminal," an all-in-one portable device that accepts all forms of retail payment, including NFC-based payments like Apple Pay.


  • Reply 1 of 6
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 12,776member
    Bought for $56MM, sold for $297MM, over a 5x investment...
  • Reply 2 of 6
    amar99amar99 Posts: 181member

    Clearly the focus of this story is on the "artists", not on the 240+ MILLION received by the sell-out ... I mean seller.
    edited March 2021 watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 6
    zeus423zeus423 Posts: 227member
    I think they put the decimal point in the wrong spot. Shouldn't it be $2.97?
  • Reply 4 of 6
    Don’t understand how this squares with squares business.  Makes me rethink holding that stock anymore.  
  • Reply 5 of 6
    michelb76michelb76 Posts: 584member
    Don’t understand how this squares with squares business.  Makes me rethink holding that stock anymore.  
    Then read what Jack wrote about it.
  • Reply 6 of 6
    chadbagchadbag Posts: 1,994member
    No thanks.  Square closed my account alleging TOS violations and wouldn’t tell me what or why. I was in full compliance as far as I know and had gotten specific approval for my business model from them when I opened the account a few years earlier.  Left me high and dry.  I wouldn’t get near anything that Justice warrior “@jack” is involved in because he can kill your business overnight without telling you why and leaving you no recourse.  

    Hypothetically speaking day you are an artist and are successful with a few albums and you rely on the new Square Tidal for everything to support yourself.  You come out with a new song that is critical of one of Jack’s pet interests.  Or you come out with something critical of the cancel Mob.   Jack will cut you off just like that.    Not worth it.  
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