Apple Inc. has agreed to acquire the Shazam music identification service, taking possession of one of the first applications to demonstrate the power of the iPhone, recognizing the songs after having listened only a few steps.
The terms of the agreement were not disclosed, but one person aware of the situation said that Apple Inc. was paying about $ 400 million for the UK-based start-up United. It would be one of the most important acquisitions ever made by Apple, with the approach of the Next Computer Inc. purchase in 1996, which allowed Steve Jobs, co-founder, to return to the company. 39; company. This transaction would be worth more than $ 600 million in dollars today.
The deal announced Monday will be a disappointment for some investors in Shazam Entertainment Ltd., including Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim and venture capital firms Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Institutional Venture Partners and DN Capital Ltd. The old company, which required twice as much time on average to provide an exit for lenders, was valued at about $ 1 billion when it closed its last funding cycle in 2015.
“A company is not worth a billion dollars until it is sold or taken out.” Mark Tluszcz, co-founder of venture capital firm Mangrove Capital Partners and chairman of the firm’s construction business Wix.com Ltd. Websites “They will face their day of account and may well turn out to be fakies, a disappointment.The case of Shazam will serve as a severe warning to other companies.”
The Shazam app uses the microphone of a smartphone or computer to identify almost all the songs played nearby, then directs users to places where they can listen to it in the future, like Apple Music or Google’s YouTube.
While Shazam has been popular with customers, he has struggled to turn his smart music service into a business that justifies its value. In 2010, it went beyond simple audio recognition by adding features that allowed viewers to broadcast a “Shazam” ad, which then opened an advertiser’s promotion on a user’s device. The company said that this feature was used 700,000 times during the Super Bowl broadcast in 2014.
“Apple Music and Shazam are a natural complement, sharing a passion for discovering music and offering great musical experiences to our users,” Apple said in a statement sent on Monday. “We have exciting plans in store, and we look forward to combining with Shazam on approval of today’s deal.”
In November, Shazam had about 175 million active users per month on iOS and Android, according to research firm App Annie. The United States is the largest single market, with about 20 million active users in November, while the UK had about 4 million in the same month.
“Since the launch of the App Store, Shazam has consistently ranked among the most popular apps for iOS,” added Apple. “Today, it is used by hundreds of millions of people around the world on multiple platforms.”
The acquisition would help Apple to integrate this ability more deeply into its musical offerings. The company’s digital assistant Siri was integrated with Shazam in 2014, allowing users to ask which song is playing in the background.