Apple has finally confirmed its $3bn (£1.8bn) purchase of Beats Music and Beats Electronics, more than two weeks after the deal was first reported by the Financial Times and alluded to by rapper and Beats co-founder, Dr Dre.
Beats, which is behind the hugely popular headphones of the same name, was founded in 2008 by Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine, who will both join Apple once the deal has passed due diligence - a process which is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter.
The $3bn price is made up of $2.6bn in cash and a further $400m worth of Apple shares which will become available to cash in over time.
“Music is such an important part of all of our lives and holds a special place within our hearts at Apple,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “That’s why we have kept investing in music and are bringing together these extraordinary teams so we can continue to create the most innovative music products and services in the world.”
The deal was first reported by the FT more than two weeks ago, and seemingly confirmed by a foul-mouthed video uploaded to Facebook in which Dr Dre said he was "the first billionaire in hip-hop". The video was deleted just hours after being published.
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“I’ve always known in my heart that Beats belonged with Apple,” said Jimmy Iovine. “The idea when we started the company was inspired by Apple’s unmatched ability to marry culture and technology. Apple’s deep commitment to music fans, artists, songwriters and the music industry is something special.”
Beats previously had a partnership with smartphone maker HTC, which carried the company’s red logo on some of its flagship handsets, a sign of improved audio quality.
Despite the huge popularity of the Beats by Dr Dre headphones, it is understand that Apple is most interested in the company’s streaming services, an area of the industry the iPhone maker is keen to enter in a bid to make iTunes a rival to Spotify.