Billionaire Carlos Slim has invested $40 million into the popular music app Shazam, predicting a future where millions of users will be able to use the app to access more than just music.
Now capable of indentifying commercial ads and television shows, Shazam has expanded outside of the music industry. Initially building a customer base on the app's ability to use algorithms to listen to snippets of songs and identify the artist and title, the London based company is now looking to the future.
Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim will help with that vision. It was announced on Monday that Slim would invest $40 million into the company that adds an estimated 10 million new users a month. With over 300 million users in total, Shazam earns about $350 million a year. The 2012 Olympics brought even more users worldwide to the app, with over 100 millions users tapping into Shazam during the closing ceremonies. The hope is to prepare for even more users during the 2016 Olympics. But Shazam's Chairman Andrew Fisher says the vision won't stop there.
"Ultimately it's about people not having to type www. to go to a website," Fisher told Bloomberg. The deal is about "enhancing the service to give people more reasons to use Shazam as part of their everyday life, not just music."
As part of the deal, Slim will gain a 10.8 percent stake in the company. In return, Shazam will come preloaded on mobile phones in Latin America, further expanding the company's customer base.
Currently a privately owned company, Fisher said Shazam was poised to become a public company in the near future but not anytime this year.
"We are certainly on a path toward an IPO, but not in 2013," he said. "It's a plan for the future. Right now, we're seeing great benefit in staying a private company."