What $200 Million Lawsuit? Spotify Acquires Soundwave And Cord Project

Spotify Office Entrance
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Despite being slapped with a $200 million legal action, Spotify has just acquired two start-ups in a bid to grow its music platform.

The start-ups include the Dublin-based music discovery company Soundwave and the New York-based Cord Project.  Terms of the acquisitions are yet to be disclosed.

Soundwave, launched in 2013, is an app that logs your listening in real-time, and allows you to follow others and form groups with like-minded fans.  Soundwave never became a mainstream hit, although it does have 1.5 million app installs across 190 countries and 14 languages.

With song-based messaging and group chats about playlists, Soundwave will offer Spotify a more engaging social play to the platform.  Soundwave CEO Brendan O’Driscoll says that ‘it’s likely that the company’s existing service will be shut down eventually, as its patents and technology are integrated into Spotify’s core product’.  O’Driscoll continues, ‘Soundwave’s data will be useful for telling Spotify what people are listening to in emerging markets where streaming is yet to catch on’.

Meanwhile, Cord Project launched in 2014 with a messaging app called Cord that reports more than 1 million users.  Cord has developed several apps for audio socializing.  Such apps include Shhout! and Chhirp, both of which include the sharing of audio snippets with large groups of people.

In a statement, Spotify Vice President of Product Shiva Rajaraman said, ‘The acquisitions of both Cord Project and Soundwave give us the opportunity to bring two extremely talented and like-minded teams into the Spotify family.’

Meanwhile, the skies have been eerily quiet following massive fireworks in recent weeks.  The first blow-up involved longtime artist champion David Lowery, who lodged a $150 million action against Spotify for non-payment or under-payment of royalties.  That was following by a similar suit valued at $200 million, leaving $350 million (or more) in potential liabilities.


(Photo by Sorosh Tavakoli, Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic, cc by 2.0)

One Response

  1. Remi Swierczek

    Free and semi-free delivery of the best music they can dig won’t create MUSIC INDUSTRY!

    BBC introduced subscriptions in 1927, most of the Europeans pay for Radio/TV subs to this date. Folks at some countries pay right now over $40 a month and only small portion supports music business.
    In the meantime music as a merchandise with current stream an broadcast rates is worth $200B a year at just 49¢ per addition to the play list.
    Mr. Ek and his followers at Google, Apple, Amazon or Deezer should increase subscription to $29.99 then he should acquire start up providing free remote sexual massage as a part of the deal.
    Only then, providing he will cross-license it to other executors of UMG suicide, we will see music industry breaking $25B glass ceiling.