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Apple Is Willing to Produce Music and TV Shows

Jimmy Iovine At The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC)Jimmy Iovine At The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC)
Jimmy Iovine, co-founder of Beats Electronics, speaks about Apple Music Photograph by Bloomberg via Getty Images

Watch out, Netflix.

Apple (AAPL) is willing to produce content, including its own music and even television shows, if the offer is right, the company’s Jimmy Iovine told The Nikkei in an interview on Monday. All it would take, Iovine told the news outlet, would be for someone to come into his office “with a great idea,” though he didn’t elaborate on whether Apple is currently looking to produce much content.

Apple has been dipping its toe in the original content waters for the last few months. In fact, Iovine’s comments come after Apple announced in March that it was planning to partner with music artist Will.iam and TV executives Ben Silverman and Howard T. Owens to produce a new series about mobile apps. The upcoming series followed Apple’s exclusive documentary on Taylor Swift’s 1989 world tour and exclusive interviews through Apple Music with major music artists.

His comments also follow reports that Apple has been trying to develop a live-TV streaming service that would run on the Apple TV. So far, however, the company has faced some pushback from networks and content owners, according to those reports.

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Producing content would put Apple squarely in the crosshairs of Netflix (NFLX) and Amazon (AMZN), two companies that have done a fine job over the last several years at not only offering a streaming service, but also delivering appealing content. Those companies have Emmy-nominated (and winning) shows, including Amazon’s Transparent and Netflix’s House of Cards.

Expanding with content could bolster Apple’s services business, which has been soaring in recent quarters. Indeed, in its last-reported fiscal quarter ended March 26, Apple’s Services business, which includes Apple Music, saw revenue rise 20% year-over-year to nearly $6 billion. It was one of the few highlights in a quarter that saw iPhone, iPad, and Mac sales decline.

Iovine could play a critical role in getting the right content for Apple to produce. Before Apple acquired Beats in 2014 for $3 billion, the company Iovine co-founded with Dr. Dre, Iovine was also a music giant, leading Interscope Records. He has been credited with propelling a slew of careers, including Lady Gaga’s.

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Iovine, in other words, has the kinds of connections Apple might need to produce high-quality music and television shows. But then again, Apple could use its cash to get into the content-creation business.

Just last month, a report surfaced, citing sources, saying that Apple had at least floated the idea of buying entertainment titan Time Warner late last year, but the idea was eventually scuttled. The report, which came from the Financial Times, added that Apple is now at least considering the idea of acquiring Netflix, though, like Time Warner (TWX), that could be a difficult purchase.

Either way, it appears Apple might soon be your next big entertainment provider.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Iovine’s comments.