Rhapsody announced today that it has agreed to acquire Napster from Best Buy. That includes the subscribers and "certain other assets" which remain unspecified. For the acquisition, Best Buy gets an also unspecified minority stake in Rhapsody.
As a result of the acquisition, Rhapsody will simply add the Naspter subscriber base to its own for one combined subscriber base. Here are some statements the company released:
"This deal will further extend Rhapsody's lead over our competitors in the growing on-demand music market," said Jon Irwin, president, Rhapsody. "There's substantial value in bringing Napster's subscribers and robust IP portfolio to Rhapsody as we execute on our strategy to expand our business via direct acquisition of members and distribution deals."
"Rhapsody has demonstrated that it has what it takes to build a profitable business in the increasingly competitive on-demand music market," said Chris Homeister, senior vice president and general manager of entertainment for Best Buy. "We are confident they are the right partner to provide Napster's existing subscriber base with an immersive digital music experience moving forward."
"This is a 'go big or go home' business, so our focus is on sustainably growing the company," said Irwin. "We're excited to welcome Napster music fans to the best on-demand music experience anywhere. Our new members will have more places to connect to the music they love and to discover new favorites, guided by Rhapsody's rockstar editorial team and the tastes of other Rhapsody members via our innovative social features."
The deal is expected to close at the end of November.
While Napster might not get the attention it once did, there's no question that it had an incredible impact on the music industry and how people find music online.