SoundCloud had a rollercoaster of a year in 2017, fighting to remain relevant in a music streaming world with stiff competition like Spotify and Apple Music. However, in 2018, it seems as though things are looking up for the company – if only a little.
If you ask CEO Kerry Trainor, formerly of Vimeo, things couldn’t be better. He claims SoundCloud “has never been healthier financially.” Less than a year after the company’s bailout, Financial Times reports that total revenue has surpassed $100 million.
That’s great news, but how did SoundCloud manage to pull it off? Anyone who uses the service frequently to listen, share, or discover music knows that the streaming platform’s focus has shifted. Instead of forcing its subscription services on its users, going the way of Spotify and other platforms, it’s focusing on tools for independent artists and podcasters.
Music creators have signed up to spend between $70 to $100 per year for heightened SoundCloud services. Now, with its new scheduling feature, artists have more control than ever, especially electronic and hip hop acts who rely heavily on the platform for getting music heard.
While things are looking up, the reality is that SoundCloud still has a long road ahead in terms of relevancy and financial security. Best case scenario for the company might actually be a buyout. Trainor insists, SC “will potentially be of interest [to suitors].”
We’ll have to wait and see how it all plays out.