Apple in preliminary talks to take stake in U.S. radio company iHeartMedia

“Apple is turning to traditional broadcasting to boost its streaming service, exploring a tie-up with iHeartMedia, the largest US radio group that is attempting to claw itself out of bankruptcy,” Anna Nicolaou and Tim Bradshaw report for Financial Times. “The company is saddled with $20bn in debt and filed for bankruptcy protection in March, as radio audiences have been lured away by digital music services such as Pandora, Spotify and Apple Music.”

“iHeartMedia is hoping Apple will take an equity stake worth tens of millions of dollars, according to one person briefed on the talks. Another person suggested that the tie-up could result in a multimillion-dollar marketing partnership rather than a direct investment,” Nicolaou and Bradshaw report. “Discussions between iHeartMedia and Apple remain at a preliminary stage and no deal has been agreed, the people with knowledge said.”

“A partnership could see Apple Music’s Beats 1 radio station, which is only available through its apps, make its debut on broadcast radio. Extra distribution would give Beats 1 and Apple Music greater awareness among older audiences who are later adopters of streaming services. A deal would also put the Apple station into more cars or kitchens,” Nicolaou and Bradshaw report. “Despite iHeartMedia’s financial difficulties, it remains the largest radio broadcaster in the US, operating more than 850 stations across the country.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Such a deal would significantly increase Apple’s already prodigious clout in the U.S. music industry.

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Apple Music continues to take share from Spotify – September 25, 2018
Why Apple Music surpassed Spotify in the U.S. – July 12, 2018
Apple slices into Spotify’s lead in U.S. music market – July 9, 2018
Apple Music now has more paying subscribers in the U.S. than Spotify – July 6, 2018
Apple revs up their own music publishing business – June 14, 2018
Oliver Schusser named new Apple Music chief as service passes 40 million subscribers – April 11, 2018
Apple Music hits 40 million paid subscribers milestone – April 4, 2018
Apple Music hits 38 million paid subscribers – March 12, 2018
Apple Music expands student membership pricing to 82 new countries – February 13, 2018
Apple Music poised to knock off Spotify – February 12, 2018
Apple Music was always going to win – February 6, 2018
Apple Music on track to overtake Spotify, become No. 1 streaming service in U.S. this summer – February 4, 2018
Apple Music and Spotify now account for the majority of music consumption in the UK – January 3, 2018
Spotify files for its IPO – January 3, 2018
Spotify hit with $1.6 billion lawsuit from music publisher – January 2, 2018
Apple Music passes Pandora and Spotify in mobile usage – March 29, 2017
Spotify hits 50 million paid subscribers – March 3, 2017
Apple Music surpasses 20 million paid members 17 months after launch – December 6, 2016
Oh ok, Spotify listeners are upgrading to Apple Music – July 19, 2015
Spotify CEO claims to be ‘ok’ with Apple Music – June 9, 2015


  1. iHeartMedia is owned by Rightwingers, you know, the same mindset that went looking for non-existent WMDs in Iraq and then invaded because it could not find them. iHeartMedia’s bankruptcy is a case study for why the gov. should not be run by business people or the commercial corporation because the health of people’s welfare can’t be equated with the health of bottom lines.

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