Music mogul Dr. Dre has confirmed recent reports claiming his popular Beats By Dre headphones have teamed with smartphone supplier HTC for a $300 million investment.
According to Dre, his team has partnered up with Verizon to launch their new smartphone line.
“I am trying to build my electronics company, Beats Electronics. We just signed a major deal with HTC and we have cell phones coming out in the next two weeks. I am involved in Chrysler; we are in cars right now. My whole thing is to take over everything with a speaker. That is what I am shooting for. The phone will be on Verizon and, like I said, it is going to be out in the next 2 weeks. … I am trying to be number 2 to Apple, and number 2 to Apple is not a bad position to be in.” (Global Grind)
Reports of the mega deal became public knowledge around mid-August.
The partnership, announced on Thursday, will lead to a line of HTC devices integrated with Beats “sound innovations”, according to a statement from the company. The devices will be available this fall. Beats Electronics is a developer of high-end headphones, which claim to reproduce the sounds heard in professional recording studios. The company also helped build an audio system for Hewlett-Packard’s ENVY laptop series. HTC is investing $300 million for a majority stake in Beats, which also has UniversalMusic Group as a stakeholder, according to media reports. (PC World)
Interscope Records chairman Jimmy Iovine also confirmed the deal.
“The marriage of these two companies is very, very good. We are very good for each other,” says Jimmy Iovine, the chairman of Interscope Geffen A&M Records and co-founder of Beats By Dr. Dre with rapper/producer Dr. Dre. “With HTC’s innovation, technology and leadership, we feel we can really compete with anybody in this area.” (USA Today)
Prior to the deal finalizing, HTC head Peter Chou said he hoped the Beats brand would increase his brand’s popularity.
“Audio is key to us right now,” said Mr. Chou. “It’s our belief that a good sound experience is key when using a mobile phone.” Mr. Chou also said that working with Beats would help the company stand out among rivals, which include Apple, Samsung and Motorola. (New York Times)
Check out a past Dr. Dre interview down below: