SoundCloud finally inks deal with Universal Music Group

Berlin-based audio sharing platform SoundCloud and Universal Music Group (UMG), have finally reached and announced an agreement.

The startup, which boasts 175 million users and more than 100 million tracks on its platform, will - and we quote - "benefit from UMG’s roster of emerging and established recording artists, as well as songwriters signed to Universal Music Publishing Group" as the company preps to roll out advertising and subscription services in the US and other markets later this year.

In addition, UMG’s labels and publishing company will gain access to SoundCloud’s promotional tools, analysis and data to help recording artists and songwriters connect with fans and sell more music and related products.

Alexander Ljung, SoundCloud co-founder and CEO, says in a statement that the 'majority of the music industry' has now partnered with the company.

There's some truth to that, but it sure wasn't a walk in the park.

At the end of last year, SoundCloud announced that it had signed a key licensing agreement with PRS for Music, the music rights holder that launched legal action against the Berlin company in August. In June 2015, SoundCloud inked a similar deal with licensing agency Merlin, and negotiations with others are ongoing. The company signed Warner Music Group in 2014.

SoundCloud has raised over $120 million in VC from the likes of Union Square Ventures, Index Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Institutional Venture Partners. Last time it disclosed revenue, in 2013, SoundCloud announced a $29 million loss on $14 million in revenues.

Last year, SoundCloud raised at least €32 million in debt funding as it struggled to secure licensing deals with major labels and other music copyright holders, and generate revenue simultaneously.

Also read:

SoundCloud raises €32 million in debt funding with an option for additional loans

SoundCloud loses its head of engineering to Scout24

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