The Financial Times says it is, in what the paper calls “a radical departure” for Apple, which has eschewed splashy acquisitions. The deal still isn’t done, but talks are far enough along to have determined that the company founded by music exec Jimmy Iovine and performer-producer Dr. Dre will report directly to Apple CEO Tim Cook, FT says. Less than two years ago, private equity firm the Carlyle Group invested $500M in Beats for a minority stake that valued the company at more than $1B and took two of the six board seats. Last month, Billboard reported that Beats’ streaming service, which launched in January, “has been a disappointment” with paid subscriptions in the low-six figures and “soon will face competition on the mobile platform when Sprint begins bundling Spotify with its ‘Framily’ plans.”
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