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IPODS & PORTABLE PLAYERS / ACCESSORIES

James Packer Hits Dr Dre Beats Paaaarty

By Oonagh Reidy | Thursday | 07/03/2013

Packer jumps to the Beat: We never thought we'd see the day Dr Dre and James Packer would be uttered in the same breath.


But it's true, the casino billionaire is joining the Beats party.

Yes folks, one of Australia's best known tycoons, James Packer, has invested his cash into Beats Electronics, behind Beats by Dr Dre headphones, it has been announced.

Packer is one of a number of high profile backers - others include Texas billionaire Lee M. Bass in an investor group headed by Warner Music owner Len Blavatnik, who are tipping $60m in a new music streaming service Beats is currently plotting, called 'Daisy,'

The service first announced in January, is tipped as a "new digital music experience."

In a statement today Russian billionaire Blavatnik said "Beats has the vision, the brand, the management team and now the investor group to effectively change the expectations and experience of a music subscription service."

Daisy, with Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor as Chief Creative Officer, is set to launch in late 2013 as a stand-alone company under Beats, promising to "bring an emotional connection back to the act of music discovery."

Even Apple is associated with the project  - Reuters reported CEO Tim Cook met with Beats co-founders Jimmy Lovine and producer Dr. Dre, expressing interest in the music service, which could challenge the global dominance of Spotify.

Last week it was revealed music revenues grew in 2012 for the first time since 1999, on the back of the popularity of streaming and subscription services like Spotify and MOG, so there's clearly money to be made.

Beats acquired MOG, the streaming music service, in 2012.

It is not known why Packer wanted to invest in the music business but perhaps Crown casino goers may be listening to Beats headphones while playing Black Jack in the future?

Or maybe Packer just wants to spread his wealth and at the moment, audio seems like a good bet.

In January, Ian Rodgers, the former CEO of Topspin and GM of Yahoo! Music, was named Beats' new Boss.

Blavatnik's investment vehicle is known as Access Industries. 

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