Daniel Ek, chief executive officer and co-founder of Spotify
Daniel Ek, chief executive officer and co-founder of Spotify AB. 2017 - Credits : Akio Kon for Getty Images

Spotify buys Niland.io to improve its artificial intelligence

Alexandre Trochut

Spotify has just acquired Niland.io, a French startup specialized in the musical recommendation powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI).

Created by two of its former researchers, Damien Tardieu and Christophe Chabuillet, at the Institute of Acoustic Research and Coordination / Music (Ircam), and located in the center of Paris, Niland was purchased by Swedish streaming plateform leader Spotify but the amount of the transaction was not disclosed. Composed of 7 research engineers, the Niland team will join Spotify’s research and development offices in New York to work on recommendation and customization tools.

We are pleased to welcome Paris-based machine learning startup Niland to the Spotify family. Niland has changed the game for how AI technology can optimize music search and recommendation capabilities and shares Spotify’s passion for surfacing the right content to the right user at the right time. The team from Niland will join our New York office and help Spotify continue innovating and improving our recommendation and personalization technologies resulting in more music discovery which benefits both fans and artists. Their innovative approach to AI and machine learning based recommendation systems is a perfect fit for the Spotify team.

– Spotify

A more accurate tracks’ suggestions are coming


For the past four years, Niland has been working on signal analysis of music itself with deep learning algorithms. By feeding a machine of thousands of playlists, and teaching him the links made by humans, the ultimate goal of Niland’s tool is to say that one person will love this piece because she loved another – no matter what success.

Our unique technology extracts meaningful information from your tracks and turns them into usable data. Whenever our algorithms analyze the audio content, they learn naturally and become stronger. 

– Niland

In order to boost its recommendations systems, Spotify regularly buys start-ups like Niland. In March, the company acquired Sonalytic, a startup responsible for a music identification technology capable of functioning despite changes in tempo, pitch, adding background noise, distortion, Filters or other effects. This is the third acquisition of Spotify in the space of a month after it also bought Mediachan Labs, a blockchain base in Brooklyn, New York.