Executive Change

Tidal Is Now On Its Third CEO in 8 Months

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Tidal has a new CEO -- its third since the music-streaming service launched in March, Billboard reports.

After months of heavy turnover in Tidal's executive ranks, the company has named former SoundCloud executive, Jeff Toig, as its new chief executive.

In addition to his previous role as SoundCloud's chief business officer, Toig brings an extensive background in music-streaming services.

All of that could bode well for Tidal, which has been fighting to gain traction among a growing field of competitors.

Tidal has proven itself to be an interesting business case. Maybe even an outlier.

The company held a relaunch in New York, but it was widely criticised. One streaming expert Business Insider talked to said "they started out on the wrong foot from the beginning."

Two CEOs have cycled through, along with a handful of other executives -- including artist and label relations SVP Zena Burns and Chief Marketing Officer Jeff Geisler.

Rumors of Tidal's demise were the song of the summer, despite cofounder Jay Z's promise that the seemingly hobbled service would survive.

Recent Jay Z sightings at powwows with Samsung executives appeared to suggest the multi-platinum rapper and mogul was looking for an out. But, if we've learned anything from Jay Z (other than the fact that he's a business, man), it's that he refuses to lose.

In an interview with Billboard published Wednesday, Toig called Tidal's business model -- music-streaming as an artist-driven creative platform -- a "powerful" and "compelling" experience. He says that despite the somewhat crowded field, "there's clearly momentum building" in the space.

Evidence of that can be seen in Tidal's subscriber growth, which topped 1 million users earlier this fall.

Though some critics have panned Tidal's subscription model -- one $9.99-per-month "basic" subscription, a $19.99 monthly membership for high-fidelity audio, and no free option -- Toig says nearly half of Tidal's subscriber's "are on the hi-fi offering."

It's not clear how many of those are paying subscribers though, since Tidal still offers a free 30-day trial for new users.

While some uncertainties remain, Toig lays out his vision for Tidal's future: "We're deeply committed to this business, and we're focusing on building a scaled, sustainable, successful business that's going to be here for a long time."

Toig officially jumps in the front seat in January.


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