Sprint has acquired one-third of Tidal, the carrier announced today. While Jay-Z and his army of artist-owners will continue to run the service, Sprint will soon offer its 45 million customers access to Tidal, including some Sprint-exclusive content.
Tidal is available in 52 countries with 42 million songs catalog and 140,000 videos.
“Sprint shares our view of revolutionizing the creative industry to allow artists to connect directly with their fans and reach their fullest, shared potential,” said Jay-Z. “Marcelo understood our goal right away and together we are excited to bring Sprint’s 45 million customers an unmatched entertainment experience.”
Sprint’s chief executive officer, Marcelo Claure, will also join TIDAL’s Board of Directors.
“Jay saw not only a business need, but a cultural one, and put his heart and grit into building Tidal into a world-class music streaming platform that is unrivaled in quality and content,” said Claure. “The passion and dedication that these artist-owners bring to fans will enable Sprint to offer new and existing customers access to exclusive content and entertainment experiences in a way no other service can.”
Sprint will also establish a dedicated marketing fund specifically for artists. The fund will allow artists the flexibility to create and share their work with and for their fans.
UPDATE: According to Music Business Worldwide, Sprint’s 33% stake cost approximately $200 million, valuing Tidal at around $600 million. This is despite Midia Research suggesting the company has as few as one million paying subscribers globally.