Jimmy Iovine joined Apple during the $3 billion acquisition of Beats earlier this year, the largest purchase in Apple’s history. Needless to say, it’s been a good year for Iovine. Now the mogul has been named one of GQ’s Men of the Year and in his interview for the award, Iovine gives details on what led to his company’s partnership with Apple.
For Iovine, the deal was a matter of growth for both Beats and Apple:
How did Apple come to buy Beats?
I convinced them that they had to buy this company. I said, “I don’t want to work for anybody else. I want to do this at Apple. I know I can achieve this at Apple. I don’t want to shop it. I wanna come here, to Steve’s company. I know you guys; I know what you’re capable of; I know you get popular culture. I know you have a hole in music right now; let me plug it.” I think it was two years before they said yeah.
The “hole” Iovine saw and wanted to plug was Apple’s lack of a streaming service in its music division. Apple Radio simply wasn’t enough to compete with companies like Spotify. This isn’t the first time Iovine has spoken about Apple’s need for a streaming service. Back in 2013, when Beats was still known as Daisy, Iovine spoke in interviews about spending years trying to convince Steve Jobs to start his own streaming music service. It’s fitting that Beats eventually ended up being the streaming service for Apple.