Spotify founder and CEO Daniel Ek told CNBC on Wednesday that he is ‘very serious’ about wanting to buy Arsenal, despite promising not to sell the English football club.
What is Spotify?
Spotify is a Swedish provider of audio streaming and media services, founded in 2006 by Daniel Ek. Spotify was founded in Luxembourg as Spotify Technology S.A and is headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, with offices in 17 different countries around the world. It is one of the world’s largest music streaming service providers, with more than 356 million monthly active users, including 158 million paid subscribers, as of March 2021.
Who is Daniel Ek?
Daniel Ek is the co-founder and CEO of streaming music service Spotify. The company has more than 180 million users, 87 million of whom are paid, subscribers. Through a dual-class stock system, Ek owns nearly 9% of the shares but has 37% of the voting control. Daniel EK and his business partner Martin Lorentzon founded the company in Sweden in 2006 and launched the product in 2008. Spotify listed its shares on the New York Stock Exchange in an unusual direct listing in early April 2018, shunning the services of investment banks.
Daniel first expressed his interest in buying the team on Twitter after plans to create an elite, breakaway football league in Europe collapsed last week following widespread reactions from fans, government figures, former players, and other sports observers.
Arsenal was one of the founding clubs behind the short-lived effort known as the European Super League. Arsenal eventually apologized to the supporters for their participation, saying in a statement that “our intention was never to cause so much suffering.”
“I want to make a very attractive offer to the owners in my opinion, and I hope they will listen to me,” Ek said on CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street.” “I’m very serious. I’ve secured the money for it,” he said
However, Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke said in a joint statement with his son and club director, Josh, on Tuesday that they have no plans to sell. The statement acknowledged recent “media speculation about a possible takeover bid for Arsenal Football Club.”
“We remain 100% committed to Arsenal and will not sell any stake in the club,” the statement said, according to the Associated Press. “We have not received an offer and will not make an offer.”
Billionaire Kroenke, who also owns the NFL’s Los Angeles Rams, took full control of Arsenal in 2018 in a deal that valued the team at $ 2.3 billion, according to The New York Times. Arsenal is currently playing in the English Premier League at the highest level.
Daniel, whose bid for the North London club reportedly includes a number of former players such as Thierry Henry, said his interest is rooted in his long-standing support for The Gunners, who last won the Premier League title in the season 2003-04.
“I’ve been an Arsenal fan since I was 8 years old,” said Ek, a 38-year-old Swedish billionaire who founded Spotify in 2006. “Arsenal is my team. I love the history. I love the players and of course, I love the fans, so when I look at that, I just see a great opportunity to create a real vision for the club,” to bring it back to its glory. ”
Under pressure from CNBC’s David Faber over Kroenke’s lack of interest in a deal, Ek said: “I certainly didn’t expect this to happen overnight. . ”
“All I can do is prepare what I think is a very thoughtful offer and bring it to them in the hope that they’ll listen to me,” Ek added. “I want the club to do better. That’s my main interest, ” he said.