File sharing platform WeTransfer to launch music streamer in 2016

Early next year, cloud-based file sharing platform WeTransfer will launch a music streamer as a marketing tool for artists — and itself. While seemingly an unlikely company to debut a music streaming “solution,” as the Amsterdam-based company calls it, WeTransfer has previously partnered with such musicians as Prince, Childish Gambino, and Big Grams to offer exclusive downloads. It sounds like WeTransfer’s new music streaming capability will focus on offering streaming music exclusives from some artists rather than offering a fully-fledged competitor to Spotify or Apple Music.

“You could see it as a marketing channel — even though I don’t really like to use that word — a marketing channel for the creator,” said WeTransfer exec Maarten Kadiks to Billboard. “Artists get a focused campaign to deliver their content to our audience, and if they announce a new track or a new mixtape to our worldwide audience, they see how impactful we are as a media company.”

Kadiks goes on to explain that we shouldn’t expect a search bar to pull up music from, say, electronic musician Jamie xx. Instead, the streamer could be a good place “for some extra attention” to a new release. WeTransfer has big aspirations for the streamer, though, and notes that the company has hired Charlie Puth’s manager Troy Carter (who is also an investor in the file sharer) to facilitate artist relations. The firm has reached out to stars like Madonna and Justin Bieber for exclusives.

In addition to being a promotional tool for artists, Kadiks admitted that WeTransfer’s new music streaming capabilities are aimed at marketing the file sharing platform stateside. WeTransfer launched in 2009, and it has a global reach of 85 million users per month, but it’s had more success in Europe thus far.

“We have more growth ambitions in the U.S. at the moment, and we think that this player could help us showcase who we are,” explained Kadiks.