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Jay Z bids to buy music streaming service

Jay Z on stage

Jay Z could be taking on Spotify, Deezer and others with a music streaming service of his own.

The rapper's company, Project Panther, has bid to take over Sweden-based Aspiro for a reported $56m (£37m).

The firm owns WiMP - which rivals Spotify in some countries - and Tidal (which streams music in HD).

The move will put Jay Z in competition with Beats Music, founded by Dr Dre and bought by Apple in 2014.

Tidal screen shot Tidal is a relatively small music streaming service offering tracks in a higher quality format that others.

Tidal currently offers users access to 25 million tracks, in addition to 75,000 music videos and other content including artist interviews for £19.99 per month.

That contrasts with Spotify's charge of £9.99 per month for 30 million tracks.

When Tidal launched in the UK, What HiFi's review said the relatively high subscription charge was "a fair price to pay" in return for its quality.

Jay Z has sold more than 100 million records worldwide and is estimated to be worth $520m (£345m), but as well as being one of the world's biggest selling music artists, he has a range of business interests.

If successful, his bid will add streaming to a portfolio including 40/40 Club sports bars, Armand de Brignac Champagne and clothing brand Rocawear.

The rapper's company Project Panther described Aspiro as "an innovative high-quality company with strong future growth potential".

Jay Z on stage

WiMP has 512,000 paying users in Europe, making it far smaller than its main rival Spotify - it boasts 15 million paying subscribers across more than 60 countries.

The deal looks set to go ahead as Aspiro published a press release welcoming the offer.

"Panther is deemed to possess the capacity to develop the company in a privately owned environment," it said.

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