Fledgling digital music service Baboom has severed its relationship with Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom ahead of a planned launch in early 2015. The Internet entrepreneur, who is wanted in the United States on racketeering charges, had owned a 45 percent stake in Baboom through his family trust, but it has since been sold to VIG Limited.
The split appears to be amicable and Dotcom bid adieu to his "love" in a statement on Twitter. "The music industry hates me," he said.
— Kim Dotcom (@KimDotcom) October 2, 2014
While avoiding specifics, Baboom CEO Grant Edmundson called it a necessary move for the service.
"In the evolution of every company, a change of leadership, direction and focus is needed and this tipping point had been reached," said Edmundson in a statement. "Kim is moving on to focus on other projects, and both camps wish each other well with future plans."
The New Zealand-based company, which was soft launched by Dotcom in January, intends to compete against popular streaming services including Spotify, Pandora and Rdio. Baboom stresses that it supports legal downloads and streams.
In July Baboom found its chief financial officer in former Sony executive Tony Smith, who promises the site won't look like any other streaming service when it launches in the first quarter of 2015.
"Baboom’s distinctive design is a world away from the cookie-cutter streaming music services," he said. "The platform will be open to artists of all kinds, will support high-quality FLAC files, faster downloads and analytics that have artists connect with fans around the world."
As previously reported, Baboom is seeking to raise AUS $4.5 million ($4.2 million USD) in funding, with the aim of listing on the Australian Stock Exchange by the end of 2014.