Rihanna announces global tour amid album buildup

Rihanna Anti album

Rihanna announced Monday a global tour next year as the R&B superstar undertakes extensive commercial tieups in the run-up to her long-awaited next album.

Rihanna will open her tour on February 26 in San Diego, performing a total of 70 shows around North America and Europe before ending on August 12 in Zurich, promoter Live Nation said.

The Barbados-born singer has sold 54 million albums since her 2005 debut but has not released a full-length work since 2012.

Rihanna has said that the new album and tour will be called “Anti,” although she has not confirmed a release date.

In a promotional deal, Rihanna has formed a partnership with South Korean electronics giant Samsung, which has launched an interactive website for “Anti” accessible only on its smartphones.

Samsung took out a large number of advertisements for “Anti” during the television broadcast of Sunday’s American Music Awards, hinting that a release is imminent.

For Samsung, the sponsorship of Rihanna would mirror arch-rival Apple’s frequent efforts to team up with artists including U2 and Drake.

Rihanna will also make tickets available early for subscribers of Tidal, the streaming service led by rap mogul Jay Z that has emphasized exclusive content from artists as it challenges rivals such as Spotify and Apple Music.

Samsung has not announced details, but the New York Post earlier reported that it had inked a $25 million deal with Rihanna.

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