Weekly News Round-Up: Spotify, Memory Chips & More

Weekly News Round-Up: Spotify, Memory Chips & More

Welcome to our weekly news round-up. Every Friday, the blog will cover some of the latest goings-on in key markets, using related reports to give context to company deals and daily news. We’ll examine current and future trends and identify opportunities we think all market participants should be aware of.


SPOTIFY SIGNS LICENSING DEAL WITH WARNER MUSIC


Streaming giant Spotify has renewed its global licensing partnership with Warner Music Group after more than two years of negotiations. Warner was the last of the world’s three biggest record labels to sign, the others being Universal and Sony Music. The company’s vast catalogue will now be available to Spotify's 140 million users.

With this deal finalised, the digital music service is expected to go public on the New York Stock Exchange by the end of the year.

“It’s taken us awhile to get here, but it’s been worth it, as we’ve arrived at a balanced set of future-focused deal terms,” Warner Music Group chief digital officer Ole Obermann said in an Instagram post.

Market Insights - The latest report on the global music streaming market forecasts growth at a CAGR of 14% during the period 2017-2021. It says the latest trend gaining momentum in the market is the rise of wearable technology. With the growing popularity and availability of smartwatches, a large number of music service providers are developing compatible applications for these devices.

For instance, Soundhound, Shazam, and Pandora Radio are some of the compatible music apps for Apple Watch. High growth in mobile ad spending is another key factor driving market growth.


UK GIVES SEMI AUTOMATED TRUCKS THE GREEN LIGHT


The UK government today announced it will begin trials of semi-automated, wirelessly connected truck convoys on UK motorways by the end of 2018.

The government is providing £8.1m in funding for trials of the technology. In a truck platoon, multiple trucks travel at an aerodynamically efficient distance and drive cooperatively by maintaining the distance at high speeds.  The acceleration, braking and steering is controlled by the lead vehicle.

“Advances such as lorry platooning could benefit businesses through cheaper fuel bills and other road users, thanks to lower emissions and less congestion,” Transport Minister Paul Maynard said.

Market Insights - The ‘Developments in Connected Truck Market Shaping the Future of Logistics’ report has identified speedy delivery and user experience as emerging critical factors in the logistics industry. It says the automation of key connected truck services such as fleet management, order management, and freight aggregation brings complete visibility to the system while effectively utilizing the assets and ensuring on-time delivery.


WESTERN DIGITAL BID FOR TOSHIBA CHIP UNIT


Western Digital has begun negotiations with Toshiba over a 1.9 trillion yen ($17.4 billion) deal for its flash memory chip business, which the Japanese conglomerate is trying to sell to cover losses from its U.S. nuclear business.

The consortium includes U.S. private equity firm KKR & Co, the  Innovation Network Corp of Japan (INCJ) and the Development Bank of Japan. They will all contribute 300 billion yen for the business, sources have told Reuters.

However, the company today said it would not seek a management role in the business, which includes voting rights. It says it will limit its voting rights to no more than one-third even after it converts its bonds to shares.

Market Insights - Analysts forecast the global flash memory market to grow at a CAGR of 11.3% during the period 2017-2021. The latest trend gaining momentum in the market is the increasing demand for next-generation memory. The demand for fast, economical, and high scalable memory solutions is increasing exponentially across the globe.


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