Jimmy Iovine plans to leave Apple Music in August (updated)

5 Jan 2018

Jimmy Iovine. Image: Featureflash Photo Agency/Shutterstock

Jimmy Iovine was hired by Apple in 2014 to help mould its streaming service.

Updated, 2.40pm, 10 January 2018: According to a report in Variety, Iovine said he has no plans to leave Apple Music in August. “My contract is up in August but, the funny thing is, I don’t have a contract.”

He added: “I have a deal, and certain things happen along that deal. The bottom line is, I’m loyal to the guys at Apple.”

Leader of Apple Music, Jimmy Iovine, is said to be leaving the company in August after a final $3bn payout from the sale of his Beats Electronics firm.

The acquisition of Beats is still the largest in Apple’s long and storied history.

Billboard reported that the timing of Iovine’s departure is likely to coincide with his shares in Apple becoming fully vested.

Iovine and Apple parting ways

According to Bloomberg, the producer and co-founder of Interscope Records is not likely to remain with the company even if a new deal is offered to him. There have also been reports of clashes between Iovine and others at the firm, including services head Eddy Cue.

Since the June 2015 launch of Apple Music, the streaming service is now the second most popular after Spotify, with 30m paying subscribers in total. Spotify still leaves it in the dust, with twice the amount of premium subscribers.

Early last year, Iovine said: “I’m trying to help Apple Music be an overall movement in popular culture, everything from unsigned bands to video. We have a lot of plans.”

What is the future for Apple Music?

Other executives at Apple had spearheaded video series to expand Apple Music’s list of exclusive content, but projects such as Carpool Karaoke made little impact.

Cue’s department at Apple is planning some original content but it is not yet apparent if it will be within Apple Music.

Iovine and rapper Dr Dre first set up Beats to sell premium headphones, but this eventually expanded into Beats Music, a subscription streaming service. The two then sold the entirety of the company to Apple.

At this point, it is not clear who will be replacing Iovine, who never had a specific role outlined in terms of his duties at Apple.

Jimmy Iovine. Image: Featureflash Photo Agency/Shutterstock

Ellen Tannam was a journalist with Silicon Republic, covering all manner of business and tech subjects