updated 03:45 pm EDT, Fri March 23, 2012
Beats said buying MOG on HTC's behalf
Beats Audio's increasingly corroborated acquisition of MOG is now thought by sources to have not only been completed but ultimately a shell operation. The anonymous insiders near MOG told GigaOM that MOG had sold for just under $12 million. Although Beats made the purchase itself, it was HTC funding the deal, according to claims.
None of the involved parties had commented on the new developments.
Although one tip had Beats making the purchase partly for its own ends, the tip would show its part-owner HTC trying to revive its music efforts. It had briefly tried its HTC Listen service last year but gave up to refocus its efforts. MOG would both be a shortcut to reviving attempts as well as a sign that the focus would be more on streaming subscriptions than by-the-track sales.
A $12 million value would be particularly low and would show that MOG has been struggling next to competitors like Rdio, Rhapsody, and Spotify. The latter is rumored to have been aiming for a funding round putting it at a value of $3.5 billion to $4 billion based at least partly on its large share of digital music. At such a value, it could get hundreds of millions of dollars in funding and have little doubt as to its future.