Ministry of Sound launches app to take on Spotify and YouTube

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Ministry of Sound has launched an assault on the online streaming market with a new service it hopes will tempt music fans away from Spotify and YouTube. 

The superclub and record label has unveiled a live radio app to appeal to gym bunnies, clubbers and armchair music fans alike as Ministry revamps its business model. 

Listeners will have free access to live sets from the south London superclub and seven different channels playing dance, r’n’b and hip-hop music.

Boss Lohan Presencer believes illegal downloads and online streaming services have cheapened the value of musicians’ work, subsequently cutting its revenues and sending the music industry into crisis.

He told the Standard: “People don’t want millions of tracks just dumped on them like you get with streaming services. They want curation and that’s what we’ve been doing for two decades – how can someone in Cupertino [Apple’s headquarters] know what someone in Manchester or London wants to hear?”

Ministry of Sound last year settled a legal battle with Spotify over the use of its compilations out of court. 

Ministry, famed for its compilation albums, has branched out into signing artists in recent years with London Grammar and Example among the artists helping it sell more than 40,000 albums a week. 

Earlier this year, the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers reported the number of UK clubs had halved to 1,733 in the last decade.

Lohan said Ministry had ridden out the “perfect storm” of longer pub opening hours and rising student tuition fees hitting clubs through its strong brand and central London location.

Group profits rose 4% to £6.2 million last year. 


Perfect storm: Ministry of Sound has proved resilient while other clubs have closed

Presencer added: “We are the most famous club in the world. It’s like going to Disneyland for grown-ups. If you offer a premium musical experience, fans have shown that they are willing to pay.” 

Plans are in the works for a huge, revamped club on the same site in Elephant and Castle in the next five years. 

Last year, Mayor Boris Johnson approved the Eileen House block of flats opposite the club after settling concessions to prevent future neighbours making noise complaints.

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November 4, 2015 |
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