ONE of the UK’s leading tech entrepreneurs, Kevin Brown, today launched a Seedrs campaign for £250k to take his most recent venture, GigRev, to market. The £250k will supplement the near £1 million which has already been raised following a successful first round and Brown’s own investment of £450k. GigRev is a white-label app platform that monetises musicians, artists and influencers’ super fans – by converting followers into subscribers – and allows them to take back control of their fan data and communication.
The SaaS tool provides a cost-effective way for artists to create their own social media networks – effectively a new digital fan club – in an age when they have handed over the ownership of their fan data to existing social channels and now have to pay to reach their own followers. GigRev will also provide a new revenue stream for them amid a dramatic decline in record sales, by allowing super fans to subscribe to the artist-branded app and pay for more exclusive content.
Brown has spent the past three years developing the powerful white-label service which he believes has the potential to revolutionise the music industry, and brings a unique combination of experience to the business. With an early venture running fan club gig tours in the eighties, Brown then went on to build and run one of Europe’s first and most successful affiliate marketing platforms, Affiliate Window, which he successfully exited from in 2011 with a turnover of over £167m. He then returned to music, running a band management company which is where he spotted the gap in the market for a technological solution to solve the long-running problem with the music industry – most musicians don’t make any money.
Key features of the GigRev platform include:
• Sharing of content to fans through a social wall
• Ability for artists to live stream video from their phones
• Pre-selling of tickets for gigs and events
• Retailing merchandise in advance for collection at gigs – maximising the short amount of time fans have and boosting musician profits
• Behind-the-scenes access for fans
• Integration with current social networks
• Chargeable subscriptions to access premium content
Kevin Brown, Founder and CEO of GigRev, said:
“The music industry is ripe for disruption. Revenues have been cut by almost half over the last 15 years due to technology like streaming, where only the biggest artists can survive, and thousands of successful artists have huge social followings they simply can’t reach or market to without paying. GigRev is an app that musicians can brand as their own and promote online, and puts the earning power back into their hands so that they can monetise their influence and actually turn a profit.”
“We know the business model works and over the past three years have built an extremely robust platform, ready and able to take on the fanbases of some of the world’s biggest names. Our Seedrs campaign will help us launch worldwide. We’re looking for investors who want to take on the music industry and be part of a new era where the power moves back to the talent and where artists can earn money from their valuable content rather than giving it away for free.”
To generate £1,500 in revenue, an artist using GigRev would only need to have around 300 superfans subscribing to their app. To generate that revenue through streaming, an artist would likely need millions of streams from tens of thousands of fans (depending on the fee agreement with Spotify). This has been the case for Ashton Lane.
The money raised from Seedrs will enable GigRev to continue its expansion, funding a team of dedicated iOS and Android developers to keep adding new features, bring new clients on board and expand into new markets. The huge potential of GigRev has not gone unnoticed.
Guy Gausden, lead investor of the current round and co-founder of booking agency 13Artists.com, which counts bands such as Radiohead, Jamiroquai and Arctic Monkeys on its books, says:
“GigRev really impressed me with its groundbreaking mobile app. This platform will solve a lot of challenges artists face in the music industry today. I’ve seen a number of platforms in the past but GigRev is unique in that it’s an artist app, not another branded social network. Artists don’t want to promote other brands – they want to promote themselves”.