TIDAL expands into Africa via MTN partnership – with monthly subs costing $4 (or less)

Africa is a focal point for the global music industry right now – with Universal Music Group, for one, recently announcing catalog acquisitions in the region and operational expansion into markets such as the Ivory Coast and Nigeria.

Today (August 23), Jay-Z’s streaming service TIDAL has announced it’s getting in on the action.

The Spotify rival has partnered with a local telco in Uganda, MTN, to offer customers a variety of options for a data-inclusive TIDAL memberships as part of their mobile plan.

The partnership is, according to TIDAL, also set to be rolled out in other MTN operations across Africa.

Customers can tap into one, three, seven and 30-day TIDAL memberships via MTN – payable over the Mobile Money (MoMo) platform – all of which include a free 30-day trial for all first-time members.

Those customers  who sign up via an MTN Pulse tariff would pay, for both TIDAL and the mobile data required to run it, UGX 1,000 ($0.27) for one day, UGX 2,000 ($0.53) for three days, UGX 5,000 ($1.33) for seven days and UGX 12,000 ($3.20) for 30 days.

Non-MTN Pulse customers can reportedly get TIDAL plus data for UGX 1,500 ($0.40) for one day, UGX 3,500 ($0.93) for three days, UGX 6,000 ($1.60) for seven days and UGX 15,000 ($4) for 30 days.

Those who do not require MTN data, meanwhile, can get a TIDAL sub for UGX 600 ($0.16) for one day, UGX 1,500 ($0.40) for three days, UGX 4,000 ($1.07) for seven days or UGX 10,000 ($2.67) for 30 days.

“Africa is a continent that has long been an inspiration for music heard around the world and TIDAL is excited to highlight the vibrant musicians on our platform. TIDAL is also thrilled to bring a new wave of digital music to Uganda as part of this collaboration” said Lior Tibon, COO TIDAL.

TIDAL artist-owner, Damian Marley, said: “I remember hearing stories about my father‘s records being destroyed once they got to Africa. They didn’t want the people to hear the message in the music. What a beautiful day it is now when Africa will not only have access to my family’s music but to all music that exists”

Jason Kpana, SVP Artist & Label Relations at TIDAL, commented: “I’m really looking forward to connecting with Uganda’s musicians and helping to bring the TIDAL music streaming experience to fans across the country. We know MTN customers will love the diverse playlists, livestreams, videos and original content available on TIDAL.”

As at June 30, 2018, MTN Uganda recorded 10.5 million subscribers across Uganda, down from the 11.2m recorded in the equivalent period of the prior year

TIDAL and MTN Uganda have announced advanced plans to host a ‘Collaboration Conference’ followed by a concert, ‘The MTN TIDAL Experience’, which will be held on 27 and 28 September respectively.

MTN Uganda Chief Marketing Officer, Olivier Prentout, explained: “The Collaboration Conference will exclusively be attended by artists, music producers and promoters. The conference aims to bring artists together to learn about the evolution of the music industry across the globe and how to expand locally along with the help of TIDAL.

“Following the conference, ‘The MTN TIDAL Experience’, featuring dancehall artist Kranium, will be for a select group of fans. Other confirmed performers include Nigeria’s DJ Spinall, our very own Beenie Gunter and local DJs are set to host the experience which will be held at the MTN Headquarters”.

He added: “At MTN we believe that everyone deserves the benefits of a modern, connected life. This partnership with TIDAL further demonstrates our strategic vision to lead the delivery of a bold, new digital world to our customers by making music more available on their smartphones.

“One product innovation MTN will add to the TIDAL subscriptions is the inclusion of data. MTN subscribers will be given the choice between daily, weekly and monthly packages payable only via Mobile Money (MoMo).”Music Business Worldwide

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