Jay Z’s recent music streaming venture hasn’t been doing as well as he and his stake holders initially hoped, with Andy Chen – the original CEO of the company before it was bought by Jay Z – being let go in April and replaced by Peter Tonstad, who later left the streaming service in June. Now, two more executives have left according to HitsDailyDouble. The first being TIDAL’s project leader Zena Burns, who left after a mere two months handling the label and artist relations. Then Jeff Geisler, Chief Marketing Officer at Roc Nation (Jay Z’s Entertainment company behind TIDAL), left the company and is reportedly going on to a similar position at Saatchi & Saatchi marketing.
Zena Burns is to be replaced by Timothy Patrick Riley, the former global head of music at Activision/Blizzard. However Roc Nation’s EVP of Strategic Marketing & Business Affairs Jennifer Justice was also confirmed to have left the company. Justice was previously Roc Nation’s general counsel in 2010, overseeing business deals and taking care of Jay’s Samsung distribution deal for his album “Magna Carta Holy Grail”, and also served as the rapper’s personal lawyer.
TIDAL launched back in the end of March, dubbed as a way to give power back to the artists instead of record labels, with huge backers like Beyonce, Coldplay, Deadmau5, Daft Punk, Alicia Keyes, Calvin Harris, Jack White, Madonna, Usher, Arcade Fire, and Rihanna. The service has since been widely criticized for having expensive subscriptions, and hypocritically putting the money towards artists who are already wealthy despite holding a ‘support-the-underdog’ type stance. Even with the constant exclusive songs and music videos, TIDAL’s mobile version quickly fell out of the top 700 U.S. iPhone App chart, and now it’s losing executive after executive, possibly because they are losing faith in the company’s success. It will be interesting to see how the company fares from this point, as it has a lot of strong competition like Pandora, Spotify, and Rdio.