Universal Music Group Partners With 7Digital to Create Customized Streaming Services

London-based 7digital has announced a new partnership with Universal Music Group to create new music partner services for individual artists.

Last week, we broke the news of a Led Zeppelin-themed streaming service in the works.  But looks like others are also considering the possibility.

Of course, Universal Music Group’s roster needs no introduction, with high-wattage superstars like Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, Eminem, Nirvana, Rolling Stones, Queen, and Elton John.  These aren’t musicians, they’re bonafide mega-brands.

Through the new UMG deal, 7digital’s services will power online stores for specific artists for fans to buy content, merchandise, and access streaming or curated playlists for their favorite artists.

7digital hopes the new deal with UMG will help shake things up, and chip away at titans like Apple Music and Spotify. 7digital’s CEO Simon Cole said his company provides a range of services for recording labels that helps create new and innovative revenue streams outside the standard business model for digital music.

Perhaps this is where a streaming platform white label fits into the 2018 marketplace.

7digital’s personalized approach to artist sites has already proven successful, as the brand has helped artists like Shania Twain and Kanye West create their own digital hubs for their music and merchandise.

The deal between 7digital and UMG is a multi-year deal that encompasses three separate global agreements. In an interview with City AM, Cole said his company was looking to expand the streaming service model “outside of the standard £9.99 model.”

Streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music have been criticized for how little of the streaming revenue actually makes it back into artists, producers, and other creatives’ pockets.  Spotify is among the lowest-paying music service, while the niche-focused Napster is among the highest.

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Streaming services justify their high royalty costs for access to their millions of subscribers, but more labels are looking to expand their business model and capture more of the streaming market, rather than sharing it with a distributing partner.

UMG’s multi-year partnership with 7digital is just one example of how music labels are toeing the line to see if launching their own branded service might be an option in the future.  Let’s see.

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