Hipgnosis Raises Another £231 million to Buy More Music Rights – Investors Seem Hungry

Hipgnosis is a company we have been watching closely over the years as they are trying to get investors interested again in acquiring music assets as an investment class.

Hipgnosis has just announced that they have raised another £231 million from Nplus1 Singer Advisory LLP and J.P. Morgan Securities plc (which conducts its UK investment banking activities as J.P. Morgan Cazenove) in a C Shares offering.

It’s very interesting to see that these types of investment options are continuing to gain traction. It will be interesting to see if it remains the case over the longterm.

Facebook and Instagram Music Service Expands to the Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Romania and Slovakia

Facebook has just announced that their music service will be expanding to seven new countries – the Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Romania and Slovakia.

This expansion will begin today and Facebook and Instagram users will now be able to see your music within those territories.

Music is now available on Facebook-owned products in over 30 countries across EMEA.

RouteNote artists that have selected Facebook for distribution, their music will now be available automatically in all their new territories.

Calm App Music Heavily into Signing Music Licenses for Sleep and Meditation Music and Hires UMG Veteran

Calm – the sleep and meditation app – has just hired its first Head of Music (Courtney Phillips).

Calm currently has 60 million downloads to date and 2m paying subscribers. Additionally, Calm Music has had over 134 million streams to date through the platform.

Calm is an app that supposedly already has a valuation over $1 billion, but its going to be very interesting to see how they can really drive adoption and subscribers and looks like signing music partnerships is going to be a great way to do that!

TikTok is Hiring a Large Number of Facebook and YouTube Employees

It seems like TikTok is hiring the best in the music industry from Facebook and YouTube.

It was reported that over two dozen employees have left Facebook for TikTok since 2018, and sources are saying that the salaries it’s offering are sometimes 20% higher than those paid by Facebook.

Additionally, it has also been reported that they are doing the same with YouTube employees.

This is a great move for TikTok are they are bringing in expertise straight from leaders in the industry (especially from a Content ID side), and employees are getting higher salaries with brand new challenges.

Free Music Distribution for Australian Record Labels and Artists

Australia has some amazing artists and record labels – from Hilltop Hoods all the way to John Farnham.

RouteNote is live in Australia and we have been working with some amazing artists and labels for many years.

RouteNote allows artists and labels to upload for Free via our Free model (artists and labels keep 85%) with no upfront costs or via our Premium model ($10 single, $20 EP, $30 album) small amount upfront but keeping 100% of the royalties. Additionally, artists and labels have the ability to move between the two models for each release depending upon what makes more financial sense for them!

RouteNote has the best reach of any distributor in the world with partners in nearly every country in the world, including a strong presence in emerging markets such as China, India, South Korea and Brazil.

Anyone can Signup for Free right now and start uploading your music today!

Investors want to Invest in Music Rights Companies – SESAC Restructuring Oversubscribed (Who is Next?)

It seems like there is a very large appetite for music rights investment at the moment. SESAC has just completed a refinancing of its capital structure, which has seen it sell off $530 million in bonds and gaining commitments for $30 million in a revolving credit facility.

Source have said that the deal was heavily oversubscribed to almost $1.5 billion.

It shows that investors are now willing to invest within the music industry, which hasn’t been the case of well over a decade.

It will be interesting to see if any other music rights companies make a move either onto the public markets or are acquired within the industry and what multiples they can achieve.

Pandora AMP’s new insights give artists the inside scoop on their music

Artists can go deep into their music on Pandora with a whole new section for analytics on the creator platform AMP.

Pandora’s AMP dashboard gives artist’s a comprehensive look at how their music fits into the streaming service and offers unique marketing opportunities. With an enhanced new Insights tab artists will be able to go even deeper into their performance on Pandora.

The old Activity Feed has been integrated into the new Insights section, showing alerts on AMP campaigns and upcoming gigs. The first thing users will notice is the new Insights section offers three different spotlights on your music and how it’s doing at the top of the page.

These metrics cover Lifetime Streams, Lifetime Artist Station Adds, and Monthly Listeners to provide all the info artists need to engage with their audiences more and expand their fan-bases.

Scrolling down presents visualisations that display the Streams, Artist Station Adds and Thumbs in visual graphs that are simple to read and digest. Artists can adjust the dates to see detailed analytics for any specific time-frame of their choice.

Finally, the new Insights offer a map of the US so that artists can see exactly where their biggest fan-bases lie and how their popularity is spread across the country. It will show where listeners have been streaming artists’ music, added their artist stations, and thumbed up their songs.

The final feature showing fan locations is an incredibly powerful tool for artists and labels. It helps to advise strategies in launching promotion and is especially useful for arranging tours and gigs in the places where the most fans are.

Pandora’s AMP got a major update earlier this year that made it even more powerful and feature-packed tool for artists. With Insights AMP has further solidified the platform as a vital tool for artists whose music is on Pandora.

View your Insights tab now by checking out your AMP dashboard. Wish you could dive into even more Pandora data? Log in or sign up for Next Big Sound to see how your tracks are performing, get notified when your music gets added to a playlist or station by Pandora’s curation programming team, and much more.

Apple’s TV subscription service may come with Apple Music

In a little less than a month Apple will take on Netflix and Amazon Prime with their TV service and rumours are abound as to how they will corner the market.

On the first of November Apple are set to launch Apple TV+, their latest entertainment offering. Having already cemented themselves as a top player in music streaming in the past 4 years, they are now looking to compete in the video streaming market.

As the launch approaches there is speculation as to what Apple will do to compete with established services like Netflix and Amazon’s Prime Video. Reports are suggesting that Apple are looking at the options for bundling Apple TV with their music streaming service Apple Music for a full entertainment bundle.

Apple have reportedly been in talks with the major music labels to explore their options in an entertainment bundle. According to the Financial Times’ report, one of the major labels is opposed to the idea with concerns that it will lose them revenue by devaluing the music offered on their service.

Apple are offering their TV subscription service for $4.99 with a 7-day free trial. A subscription to Apple TV+ will provide access for up to six people to watch from a range of big budget, original TV shows and films.

To entice new viewers and attempt to snatch them away from established video streamers, Apple will be offering 12 months of TV+ for free with new iPhone, iPad and Mac purchases. It’s a sneaky way of immediately cementing a large user-base that could lead to a range of committed fans before they’ve even paid for a month of the service.

It’s worrying when a company has the money to launch a new service and is in a position to gain potentially tens of millions of users without needing them to pay for the service. Video streaming is the next industry for Apple to try and take over, what other entertainment sector will be left for them to push out independent companies and competitors after this?

Find Spotify in Google Maps now to soundtrack your journey

There’s no better cause for a long stream of music than when you’re on a long journey, it’s also a good time to use Google Maps for directions.

Google understand how important music is when you’re on a trip somewhere. But when you’re using Google Maps you’re not usually in a position to be switching across to your music player and back, especially if you’re driving!

Google have integrated Spotify into Google Maps so that streaming and directing yourself at the same time can be seamless. Streaming music whilst you’re on the go is a must for most people now. Who wants to drive without their favourite tunes? If you’re using a navigation app then it can be dangerous to try and control your music at the same time.

A small Spotify player will now be built into the Google Maps app so that when it’s giving directions you can control your playback without leaving the screen. Pause, play and skip controls will all be available without leaving the directions screen.

When you’re not on the road, or if a passenger takes control, it’s simple to go straight to the Spotify app from Google Maps if you want to browse music fully and change your stream.

The integration will be rolled out to all Google Maps users over the next few days. It will require the latest versions of the Google Maps and Spotify apps to work together.

Daily Drive brings Spotify’s radio-style experience for drives to Germany

Driving down the Autobahn or riding on the Höllentalbahn just got a lot more personal with personalised Daily Drives now on Spotify in Germany.

Spotify have just launched their Daily Drive playlists in Germany. The playlist combines a personalised stream of music based on your tastes and combines it with short podcasts of “relevant, timely world updates” to re-create a radio-style experience perfect for commuting and long trips.

The US equivalent takes short podcast episodes from Wall Street Journal, NPR, and PRI for news updates and current affairs like analogue radio. For Germany they’ll take their updates from Deutschlandfunk: Nachrichten, Spiegel Update, and Zeit Online: Was Jetzt?

What makes Daily Drive great is that it’s like listening to the radio, if the DJ behind the tracks was yourself selecting only the finest cuts from your own music taste. The music it plays is a collection of songs Spotify knows you like as well as suggested tracks based on your listening so you’re hearing something new.

Daily Drive is now available to drivers in the US and in Germany – and non-drivers if you want a radio style mix outside of the car. Spotify say themselves it’s the perfect accompaniment to help journeys fly by no matter how you’re travelling.

Spotify have not said whether they intend to take the feature to other countries yet. No doubt if it’s a success in Germany as well then they’ll look for wider launches in other countries.