SoundCloud, Universal Music Group Announce Licensing Agreement

by Raheem Karim
SoundCloud

SoundCloud and Universal Music Group announced on Wednesday that they’ve reached a agreement to license music from Universal’s massive stable of artists — one that includes Kanye West, Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, and Adele, to name a few — on the audio-sharing site.

SoundCloud has been a platform for artist from all to upload, record, promote and share their originally-created sounds.

“With this partnership, we’re ensuring recording artists, songwriters and labels benefit, both creatively and commercially, from the exciting new forms of music community engagement on SoundCloud,” UMG CEO Lucian Grainge said in a statement. “We look forward to working with SoundCloud and supporting the company’s evolution into a successful commercial service.”

“Bringing together the world’s largest audio platform and the world’s largest music company means we are able to further expand SoundCloud’s role as a critical platform for creators and open up its benefits to UMG’s extensive roster of artists,” said SoundCloud founder and CEO Alexander Ljung.

While financial details of the deal weren’t disclosed, it follows a similar agreement with Warner Music Group in 2014. According to The Wall Street Journal, a parameter of that deal was SoundCloud’s promised launch of a subscription service. In Wednesday’s announcement, the companies announced that SoundCloud plans to introduce the services “later this year”

That leaves Sony Music Entertainment the only one of the “big three” music companies not to have reached an agreement with the Berlin-based SoundCloud, which boasts 175 million monthly users. And while just last summer Sony pulled its artists’ music from the site, SoundCloud’s Chief Content Officer Stephen Bryan told Billboard on Wednesday that they have a “very compelling offering to make.”

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