Music labels are wondering if Tidal will ever catch up royalty payments. The music streaming service that pitches itself on offering lossless audio hasn’t been keeping up with agreements in the industry as its low on cash, according to Dagens Naeringsliv.
Tidal may shut down soon if it doesn’t figure out a way to ensure music labels are properly taken care of.
The report doesn’t shy away from the severity of Tidal’s situation. It says that “three major international record companies” haven’t seen royalty payments arrive on time or at all recently. Tidal is actually over six months behind on royalty payments for a Sony-owned label.
Hearing about its latest struggles shouldn’t come as a surprise. Back in late 2017, the same publication revealed that Tidal barely had enough cash to remain in business for six months. It’s been almost six months, so pulling the plug this summer might be very likely.
Sprint invested $200 million in the service last year; however, it’s unlikely a significant portion of that will ever be returned.
As a whole, music streaming is doing fine. Spotify and Apple Music are dominating with over 120 million subscribers combined. Then there are plenty of ad-supported services rounding out the rest of the field. Tidal entered a crowded space, and it did so without anything mainstream consumers care about.
The latest news says that, due to the missed or delayed royalty payments, some artists are asking their music labels to pull their content from Tidal. If that happens, consider its fate sealed. Tidal would presumably shut down immediately following the exit of big names.