According to a source of the The Wall Street Journal, online dance music retailer Beatport will introduce a free-of-charge streaming service. The creation of Robert F.X. Sillerman’s/SFX Entertainment, Beatport sole focus has been the selling of dance music downloads for the past decade, with DJs as its key market. In 2015, however “a free, ad-supported music streaming service” will be initiated.

WSJ draws an immediate link to the extensive acquisitions of events and festival by SFX Entertainment:

“a community center for dance-music fans, showcasing event information, artist profiles and, potentially, live-streamed performances […] The site is likely to incorporate SFX’s latest acquisitions: a music-based social network called Listn, and, which allows users to listen in real time to what’s being played in clubs around the world.

The goal: To funnel the roughly 300 million fans each year who visit SFX’s 59 separate websites, or view its content elsewhere, into one place, so that advertisers can reach them more efficiently, the company has said.”

One major challenge will be the licensing for all the tracks the streaming service will offer. Although more underground labels won’t make too much a hassle of free streaming of their releases, big EDM names usually have watertight deals with labels that demand strong legal documentation before a track of Calvin Harris, Skrillex or deadmau5 can be embedded by a third party.

Aside from that, Beatport will face strong competition, as they are not the first streaming service in the world. Music Times reports: “that Beatport will be jumping into an increasingly crowded market with Spotify, Deezer, Pandora, YouTube’s Music Key and Apple’s Beats Music, so the competition will be fierce from the start. It has the advantage of a large electronic music database that grows daily, with many tracks signed to two-week exclusive deals on the service. It may try and leverage that to build its streaming platform even greater.”

Although not yet officially announced by Beatport itself, we can probably expect the online music giant to come out sooner than later with this news and more details about what the implications will be exactly.
Source: The Wall Street Journal / Music Times