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Spotify says no acquisition talks with Apple

A Spotify spokesman tells CNET that Apple has not entered into acquisition talks with the European music service.

Contrary to a published report, Apple has not talked with Spotify about acquiring the European digital music service, a Spotify spokesman said today.

TechCrunch reported it had received an anonymous tip that Apple had approached Spotify about a possible acquisition. TechCrunch said that it had "dug into" the information and it had checked out.

"Apple and Spotify are in on-again, off-again discussions about an acquisition, but at best it's very early in the process," TechCrunch wrote. "No firm price has been offered, no term sheet tabled. Still, it's interesting that the two are talking."

Spotify's spokesman Jim Butcher said those discussions have never taken place.

"We wouldn't normally comment on this kind of speculation, but we wanted to make it clear that we have absolutely no intention of selling Spotify," he said.

Spotify already has a strong hold of the streaming music market in Europe and is trying to make the move to the United States. The company's attempts to open a digital music service here have met with multiple delays, but managers insisted they will launch before the end of the year.

Two weeks ago, CNET reported that Apple executives had recently discussed Spotify with their label counterparts, voicing concerns about the potential for a free streaming service to cut into already softening download sales. Music industry sources said then that Apple was considering the possibility of launching its own subscription service, but many at the company remained skeptical subscription services would ever work.