Jay-Z’s Tidal, a music streaming service that’s aiming to compete with a bevy of other options including Spotify, Pandora, Rdio, Google Play Music, Xbox Music and, soon, Apple Music, no longer has a leader. The company said Tuesday that it let go of its interim CEO Peter Tonstad.
“We are thankful to Peter for stepping in as interim CEO and wish him the best for the future,” Tidal told The Wall Street Journal on Tuesday. Tonstad had taken the job as interim CEO while the company looked for a more permanent solution just three months ago. Tonstad took the reins from Andy Chen in April.
The news is particularly surprising because Tonstad wasn’t just any old replacement; instead, he’s also a former CEO of Tidal’s parent company Aspiro. When he was appointed to the interim spot, Tidal said that Tonstad “has a better understanding of the industry and a clear vision for how the company is looking to change the status quo.” Perhaps that didn’t turn out to be true, or didn’t align with where execs like Jay-Z wanted to take the company.
It’s possible that Tonstad hadn’t increased the user base quickly enough. The Wall Street Journal said Tidal has just 770,000 subscribers compared to Spotify’s 20 million. No word on who the company has its eyes on to lead next, but it’s going to face increased competition with Apple Music launching later this month.