Spotify announced this morning in a brief press release that it has acquired Loudr a company founded in 2013 to build products and services to help content creators, aggregators and digital music providers to identify, track and pay royalties to music publishers. (The announcement actually said the company has “joined the Spotify family.”)
Its staff will move into Spotify’s New York offices, where it will continue to provide “select services to its publishing and aggregator partners, while contributing to Spotify’s continued efforts towards a more transparent and efficient music publishing industry for songwriters and rights holders.”
Spotify has faced criticism over its licensing and royalty payments as well as copyright infringement lawsuits, the most eye-grabbing of which was a $1.6 billion lawsuit from Wixen Music Publishing, whose catalog includes songs by Tom Petty, Neil Young, Stevie Nicks and others, but in comments the company’s chief seems open to a settlement. The suit followed a proposed $43 million class-action settlement to a suit brought by singer-songwriter Melissa Ferrick and others.
The move also takes place while Congress weighs the Music Modernization Act, designed to improve payments to creators, which was approved unanimously by a House Judiciary Committee yesterday.
“What Loudr has built is more than just a smart and easy way for artists to obtain mechanical licenses; it’s true music industry innovation,” said Adam Parness, Spotify’s global head of publishing, in the announcement. “The Loudr team perfectly complements Spotify’s music publishing operation and, together, we believe we can continue to foster a more open, streamlined, and modern music publishing landscape.”