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Leila Abboud

Spotify's Little Bout of Puppy Love

Buying SoundCloud might work, but only at the right price.

SoundCloud is a bit like Twitter, and they're both a lot like puppies. Adorable disasters that can’t easily be trained not to spoil your rug.

Hear me out. Twitter is incomprehensible to many civilians but beloved by a core of obsessive users among celebrities, politicians, journalists and financial traders. Its product is as easy to use as a canoe with a hole in it. Growth has stalled, leaving its shares worth about half their IPO price and prompting it to be put on sale. SoundCloud is privately owned but in a similar boat. In fact, the Berlin-based music and podcast sharing platform is even worse off. It’s unprofitable, probably permanently so, despite a promising start as a home for independent artists and DJs and the recent launch of a paid streaming service.