The Wall Street Journal reports Beats co-founder and Apple music executive Jimmy Iovine will transition to a “consulting role” for Apple Music, starting in August.
Iovine is one of the few remaining music execs Apple welcomed when it bought Beats Electronics LLC in 2014 — a team which once included Ian Rogers, Dr. Dre, and Trent Reznor before they all distanced themselves from the company. In addition to Iovine, Luke Wood, who oversees the headphones business, also remains. Since the acquisition, Iovine has played a vital part in the growth of Apple Music, providing the brand with artistic credibility and savvy that it may have otherwise lacked.
WSJ did not include details as to exactly what duties that Iovine’s “consulting role” will consist of. Iovine does plan to “spend more time with his family while supporting Apple Senior Vice President Eddy Cue, who oversees Apple Music, as needed.”
The report indicates that one possible reason for Iovine taking a step back is the transition from Beats “edgy culture” to Apple’s focus on pleasing everyone.
For Mr. Iovine and his colleagues, transitioning from the edgy culture they established at Beats to an Apple Music culture that is more focused on appealing to the masses was a particular challenge … Most of Apple Music’s operations were left to senior executives Robert Kondrk, who oversees the business of Apple Music and iTunes, and Jeff Robbin, who oversees the product and engineering teams, the people said.
In part, Iovine’s timing of his transition is connected to the vesting of the Apple shares he received when the Cupertino firm acquired Beats. The shares will fully vest in August.