Music Tech Startup Soundstr Closes $1.1M in Seed Financing
Soundstr’s New Music Identification Technology to Benefit Both Venue Owners & Songwriters
(Cincinnati OH – November 29, 2016)
Soundstr, a music technology startup aiming to bring fairness to real-world music usage, has closed a $1.1 million round of seed financing. CincyTech led the round with participation from entertainment data and technology company Gracenote, Accelerant and angel investors.
Soundstr’s patent-pending technology offers tracking data to the manner in which venues and businesses pay for the use of music, and songwriters receive royalties. Music is protected by copyright law, and most businesses and venues that play music are required to pay for a license. Under the established model, many businesses pay performing rights organizations (PROs) for catalogues of music, even if they use only a fraction. Soundstr’s technology connects to a venue’s audio system, uses Gracenote’s best-in-class Automatic Content Recognition (ACR) to identify every song played, and creates a record of actual music usage.
“Soundstr’s data can lead to more efficient music licenses,” said Eron Bucciarelli-Tieger, CEO of Soundstr. “Paying for actual music usage could lower license fees a business pays to some Performing Rights Organizations, leading to more businesses paying for licenses. Both scenarios lead to more songwriters receiving compensation for use of their music, which is at the core of our mission.”
Hundreds of thousands of businesses are subject to the license requirement but some ignore it at the risk of lawsuits and costly fines.
“Disruption is an overused term, but in this case, it truly fits. We cannot imagine many areas more ready for disruption than this,” said Doug Groh, director at CincyTech. “We saw that the current methods of determining music licensing fees and royalty payments were both grossly unfair and highly inefficient. Eron showed a deep understanding of all of the players involved: artists, venues, music publishers, and fans— and their motivations.”
Bucciarelli-Tieger’s knowledge stems from years in the music industry, as a founding member of the platinum-selling band Hawthorne Heights. He founded Soundstr to help more accurately distribute royalties to songwriters whose music is played in establishments.
Soundstr is currently conducting pilots in several music venues and also with the Canadian Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers (SOCAN).
“SOCAN is investing significant resources towards a new world of music consumption and rights management. The identification of the music used in real world businesses, and the related data is crucial to our success,” said Jeff King, COO of SOCAN. “In our pilot tests, Soundstr’s technology is showing promise and potential. Between the ease of use and accuracy, we see tremendous opportunity to bring more transparency and clarity to the industry.”
Soundstr is taking pre-orders for an January 2017 launch. Sign-up at the following links: