Music streaming service Mixcloud has signed a licensing agreement with Warner Music Group, its first deal with a major record company.
According to Mixcloud’s press release, the agreement will help enable a new offering in which fans can subscribe to creator channels “for a more interactive listening experience.” The deal will also “help audio creators on the platform monetise their content.”
Founded in 2008, Mixcloud offers around 12 million radio shows, DJ sets, and podcasts, which are produced by over 1 million creators. However, the platform uses a statutory radio license, which limits the content that creators can use. Some creators have experienced copyright takedowns in recent years, similar to that of SoundCloud and other platforms.
Nico Perez, co-founder and director of content at Mixcloud, said in the press release:
“Since the beginning, we have worked with rightsholders to both monetise long-form audio and champion the importance of curation in the streaming industry. As we embark on direct licensing relationships with the major labels, we are committed to doing what is best for artists, curators, music fans, and the industry.”
Ole Obermann, EVP of business development and chief digital officer at Warner Music Group, added:
“This deal is a good example of our willingness to experiment and lead in embracing differentiated new business models. As streaming opens up access to a vast universe of music, we are seeing a complimentary rise in fans’ engagement with curated experiences, such as playlists, on-demand radio shows, and DJ sets.”
Billboard reports that Mixcloud is in discussions with Sony Music, Universal Music Group, and independent rights organization Merlin about striking similar license deals to that of Warner.
Mixcloud hasn’t revealed details of the new subscription plan, but Perez told Financial Times:
“We don’t want to do the $9.99 a month. That’s done. That market is served. What we’re building is going to be very customised.”
Financial Times added:
“While the labels have been hesitant to budge on a $10 a month price, Warner Music does not view Mixcloud as a direct threat to Spotify, which made the label more open to experiment, according to one person close to the deal.”
Updated on Oct. 10, 2017.