“When news spread last week that Apple Inc. (AAPL) was near an acquisition of Beats Electronics LLC for $3.2 billion, Beats co-founder Dr. Dre appeared in a video boasting of becoming the ‘first billionaire in hip hop,'” Adam Satariano reports for Bloomberg. “Apple executives, by contrast, were characteristically silent.”

“The differing reactions underline the seemingly odd cultural fit between the world’s most valuable company and a celebrity-fronted Santa Monica, California-based provider of headphones and online music. Beats executives are known to throw lavish parties and have musicians traipsing through at all hours, while Apple is an engineering haven for coders and designers,” Satariano reports. “Yet underneath those surface differences, the two companies are more aligned than it might appear, with deep ties to one another. Beats co-founder Jimmy Iovine, a longtime producer and executive, was friendly with Apple co-founder Steve Jobs and is a big supporter of the company’s efforts in music. Apple, meanwhile, has cultivated extensive relationships in the music business and its iTunes team is populated with former radio promoters, music writers and other industry veterans. The familiarity may help Apple more quickly reap the benefits of a deal once it’s completed.”

“Apple became interested in doing a deal with Beats after executives were impressed by Beats Music, the online music streaming service unveiled earlier this year, which was rapidly converting users into paying subscribers, said a person with knowledge of the talks, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private,” Satariano reports. “The negotiations between the two companies heated up recently, with Iovine and Dr. Dre seen around Apple’s Cupertino, California-based campus in the past week, said the person. A deal could bring Iovine into Apple’s fold reporting to CEO Tim Cook, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private. Beats will probably remain an independent brand, the person said.”

“With a deal with Apple to be announced as early as this week, Iovine could become a billionaire. He owns 25 percent of Beats, and with proceeds from the deal and millions of dollars collected from more than five decades producing artists such as U2 and Fleetwood Mac, he’ll have a net worth of $1 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaire Index,” Satariano reports. “Dr. Dre, meanwhile, is projected to collect $640 million if a deal is completed, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.”

Much, much more in the full article – recommended – here.

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