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Beats raises $60 million for new music streaming service launching this year

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The kind of money that will help Beats keep pace with Spotify and Rdio

beats audio
beats audio

Billionaire mogul Len Blavatnik is part of a group that will invest $60 million in Daisy, the subscription music service announced in January by the makers of the Beats by Dr. Dre headphones, music industry sources told The Verge.

The deal could be announced as soon as this week, the sources said. Details about the agreement are few but the pact is only the latest sign that investors are throwing large sums of money into subscription music. Last year, Spotify attracted $100 million in investment on a $3 billion valuation. Blavatnik is the Russian-born entrepreneur that acquired Warner Music Group in 2011 for $3.3 billion. His investment is being made through Access Industries, the company that Blavatnik invests through, and not Warner. The names of the other investors could not be ascertained.

A spokeswoman for Beats Electronics declined to comment. A spokesman for Access Industries was not immediately available Tuesday evening.

Blavatnik is the Russian-born entrepreneur that acquired Warner Music Group in 2011 for $3.3 billion

Beats Electronics is the company that makes Beats by Dr. Dre headphones, which upended the industry by pairing design, high prices, and bass-heavy audio. The company was founded by the duo of Dr. Dre, the rapper and record producer, and Jimmy Iovine, chairman of Interscope-Geffen-A&M. Last year, Beats Electronics acquired MOG, a struggling streaming music service that saw itself eclipsed by Rdio and Spotify.

Iovine and Dr. Dre picked up MOG as an inexpensive way to obtain the technology backbone needed to build an all-in-one media and e-commerce outlet, insiders say. In addition to music and audio gear, the new service will sell a variety of other undisclosed merchandise. As for when the new service might launch, Iovine hinted last month that Daisy, which is only the internal codename, could make a debut sometime this summer.

Update: Bloomberg reports that the investment is a done deal, with Daisy set to launch towards the end of 2013. The investment group led by Len Blavatnik also includes casino mogul James Packer, affiliates of businessman Lee M. Bass, and Marc Rowan of Apollo Global Management.