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Google acquires music playlist generator Songza

Google has been on a spending spree this year, buying up a total of 20 startups already

Financial trends and news by Steven Loeb
July 2, 2014 | Comments
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/37d8

Last year, Google got into the music streaming space with All Access, which was unveiled last May. Since then, though, I kind of have to admit that I forgot that it did. Maybe that's because of all the stuff that Apple has been doing in the same space, but Google kind of got lost in the shuffle (I like puns!)

That might have changed, though, with Google's latest acquisition: playlist generator Songza, which revealed the news in a short statement on Tuesday:

"You know why we love building Songza? Because you trust us to make every moment of your day better — and that’s a pretty huge honor. Today, we’re thrilled to announce that we’re becoming part of Google. We can’t think of a better company to join in our quest to provide the perfect soundtrack for everything you do," the company wrote.

No financial terms of the deal were revealed, and, according to Songza, the company will not be shutting down as a result of being purchased. 

"No immediate changes to Songza are planned, other than making it faster, smarter, and even more fun to use," the company wrote.

Google concurred with that in a Google+ post on Tuesday, saying, "Over the coming months, we’ll explore ways to bring what you love about Songza to Google Play Music. We'll also look for opportunities to bring their great work to the music experience on YouTube and other Google products."

Despite what both companies are saying, there will be at least one change right now: the company is going to be updating its Terms of Service and Privacy Policy to match them with Google's.

Songza, which officially launched in September 2011, is a cloud-based digital music service that allows users to create and share music playlists. It offers a Music Concierge that will give users suggested playlists that are based on day and time, along with filters for mood.

For example, since I am writing this on a Tuesday night, it has options for "unwinding," "studying (no lyrics)," "bedtime," and "love and romance." If I switch it to Wednesday afternoon the options include, "unwinding," "bedtime," and "studying (no lyrics)."

The company raised roughly $7 million, including $2 million in financing in September 2011, and another$4.7 million in September 2013. Investors in the company included Amazon.com, William Morris Endeavor, Lerer Ventures, Deep Fork Capital, Metamorphic Ventures, Troy Carter, Scooter Braun, Gary Vaynerchuk, Geoff Judge and Nicole Junkermann.

It is interesting that Google brings up a possible integration with YouTube, given that Google had been planning a YouTube music streaming service last year, before it was postponed due to it reportedly not being ready for launch. Perhaps the Songza purchase is a sign that the company's second music streaming service is almost ready for its debut. 

Google 2014 acquisitions

Google has been on a bit of a spending spree so far this year, picking up a total of 20 companies altogether.

Here is the complete list:

The first company it purchased was Bitspin, the Zurich-based maker of the Timely clock app. That was followed by: cyber security Impermium; artificial intelligence company Deepmind; sound authentication firm SlickLogin; ad fraud detector Spider.io; Android game developer Green Throttle Games; drone manufacturer Titan Aerospace; back-end online retail solution Rangespan; ad attribution company Adometry; restaurant website builder Appetas; cloud monitoring service StackdriverQuest Visual, the company behind translation service Word Lens; mobile device manager Divide; satellite maker Skybox;  video advertising company mDialog; wireless-communications startup Alpental Technologies; and performance optimization platform Appurify

And, of course, the company bought smart thermostat company Nest Labs for $3.2 billion, the most the company has ever spent on a startup acquisition. Nest has since bought two startups of its own to add to the Google family: energy monitoring platform MyEnergy and video-monitoring and security startupDropcam.

(Image source: plus.google.com)


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