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TIDAL AXES TWO EXECS IN ONE DAY, AMID INCREASING TURBULENCE

Troubled Tidal fired CFO Chris Hart and COO Nils Juell during the same day, Business Insider reports, citing  Swedish news site Breakit (Hart) and Norwegian newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (Juell) as sources. 

Hart had been with the company since 2012, long before Jay Z acquired it, the last two years as CFO. The Breakit report says his departure came after an internal dispute about how the company handles user and streaming numbers, quite possibly having to do with the service’s policy of not sharing its data with Nielsen Music.

Said policy came under media scrutiny when Tidal failed to provide sales figures on Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo, which had briefly been for sale as a Tidal exclusive before West pulled it down. 

Tidal is on its third CEO since Jay Z bought it last year. The service has also lost its chief investment officer, U.S. marketing manager and SVP of label and artist relations.

In related news, a $5m class-action lawsuit filed against Tidal alleging unpaid mechanical royalties by a less-than-credible entity may get some traction if others join in. Sources say that Tidal is far behind in payments to the major rights holders, which could indicate the lawsuit has real merit.

It remains to be seen, meanwhile, whether speculation about Samsung buying Tidal, first reported last week by the New York Post, has merit. Jay Z has managed to persuade Samsung to throw millions of marketing dollars at acts such as Rhianna, and the tech giant is believed to have given Kanye $3m for some involvement in his album, which remains in limbo—apart from streaming on Tidal.

See I.B. Bad's latest column for more on Tidal, including a look at Desiree Perez, Jay Z's formidable dealmaker. 

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