“The object of the artist is the creation of the beautiful. What the beautiful is is another question.”
Tencent’s stake in Indian Spotify rival Gaana is now worth $182.5 million, compared to its initial stake worth $115 million back in February 2018. This week, Gaana recently raised 3.75 billion INR (approx. $51 million) in debt to help finance its growth from two existing Gaana investors - Tencent and the platform’s majority-owner Times Internet. In August, Gaana’s monthly active users surpassed 185 million, and as a result of the new debt raise, Gaana is now worth around $530 million, according to Entrackr.
The Mechanical Licensing Collective’s Head of Third-Party Partnerships, Dae Bogan, will host a series of webinars specifically for self-administered songwriters over the next couple months, the company reports, ahead of its official launch in January 2021 when it will begin to issue and administer blanket mechanical licenses to eligible digital service providers in the US.
Music industry execs Jamila Thomas and Brianna Agyemang issued a new series of demands directed at “ALL organizations operating in the world of Black music” under their organization #TheShowMustBePaused, which began with a call for a single day shutdown and soon grew into a movement that called for change across the entire industry.
We would also really appreciate your participation in our 10-minute Survey to the Music Industry and Survey to Consumers of Music released last week, which will be a part of our Music Industry Report - 2020 in partnership with the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce. Thank you so much for your consideration!
Our next video of the weekly “Music Industry - 5 Mins or Less” video series is about whether to report your royalties on your taxes! Learn more here:
In this newsletter:
- Tencent Acquires a Bigger Slice of Indian Spotify Rival Gaana, Upping Its Stake to More Than a Third
- The MLC Presents: How Self-Administered Songwriters Can Get Started and Play Their Part
- #TheShowMustBePaused Issues New Set of Demands to Music Industry
- Amazon Brings Twitch’s Live Streams to Its Amazon Music App
- Facebook Watch Hits 1.25 Billion Monthly Users, Company Says
- Stat of the Week: Nearly a Third of People in the US are Using Music Streaming Subscriptions
Now, the details...
Compiled by Heidi Seo
Exploration Weekly - September 4, 2020
Tencent Acquires a Bigger Slice of Indian Spotify Rival Gaana, Upping Its Stake to More Than a Third
Indian streaming service Gaana has just raised 3.75 billion INR (approximately $51 million) in debt to help finance its growth. The money comes from two existing Gaana investors - Tencent, and the platform’s majority-owner Times Internet - in the form of optionally converted debentures at a price of 63,761.93 INR (around $870) per share. The majority of this cash (approximately $41 million) has been handed over by Tencent’s European entity, Tencent Cloud BV, with the remaining amount coming from Times Internet. Gaana recently announced in August that it had surpassed 185 million monthly active users. Entrackr estimates that, as result of the new debt raise, Gaana is now worth around $530 million, with Times Internet’s stake worth $319 million, and Tencent’s stake worth $182.5 million. Tencent initially acquired a stake in Gaana via a $115 million investment in the company in February 2018.
The MLC Presents: How Self-Administered Songwriters Can Get Started and Play Their Part
Beginning January 2021, The MLC will issue and administer blanket mechanical licenses to eligible digital service providers (DSPs) in the US. The MLC will then collect the royalties due under those licenses from the DSPs and pay music publishers, administrators, and self-administered songwriters, composers, and lyricists. Dae Bogan, The MLC’s Head of Third-Party Partnerships, will host a series of webinars specifically aimed to self-administered writers. Each webinar will include a recap of The MLC’s activities to-date and their plans for the future. Dae will also explain how self-administered writers can become Members of The MLC and will help guide them through the process of organizing their musical works data now, ahead of the roll out of The MLC’s new user portal for Members.
#TheShowMustBePaused Issues New Set of Demands to Music Industry
After the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police in May, an organization formed by music industry execs Jamila Thomas and Brianna Agyemang under the name #TheShowMustBePaused began with a call for a single day shutdown and soon grew into a movement that called for change across the entire industry. Major labels, Live Nation, AEG, and many other companies pledged millions of dollars and major overhauls to their policies within a matter of weeks, if not days. Recently, Thomas and Agyemang issued a new series of demands directed at “ALL organizations operating in the world of Black music” that, broadly speaking, call for: “executive leadership rationale” and what percentage of companies’ leadership is Black, “fair pay for ALL,” “career development opportunities allocating budget to support Black executive and professional representation in music departments other than just ‘urban’ or ‘Black music,’” and more.
Amazon Brings Twitch’s Live Streams to Its Amazon Music App
Amazon announced this week that Twitch’s live streams will now be available in the Amazon Music app on iOS and Android, with the goal of allowing fans and artists to connect amid a pandemic where in-person concerts have been cancelled. In Q2 2020, Twitch grew 56% in hours watched compared with Q1, passing the 5 billion mark, due to the increase in online entertainment. By July 2020, the “Music & Performing Arts” category on Twitch had grown 387% year-over-year to 17.6 million hours watched. Spotify is also developing a virtual events platform, expected to launch soon. And YouTube touts its concert footage and live performances as a reason to sign up for its YouTube Music Premium service.
Facebook Watch Hits 1.25 Billion Monthly Users, Company Says
Facebook’s video arm Watch is now bringing in more than 1.25 billion users each month, according to Facebook. Due to the COVID pandemic, there has been increased traffic for Watch, says the company, with a noticeable spike in livestreamed content and more viewership for gaming, fitness, and religious/spiritual content. Gaming live streams now draw more than 200 million viewers each month, and watch time for Facebook Gaming content shot up 75% from the beginning of this year to June, it said. Reported by Variety, Facebook’s 1.25 billion count not only includes people who actually watch livestreamed or crystallized content, but also anyone who live streams at least one minute of video on the platform. Matthew Henick, Facebook’s VP of content strategy and planning, said one of the reasons for Watch’s growth is its parent platform’s robust set of sharing and promotion tools, which allow users to spread Watch videos on their own feeds.
Stat of the Week: Nearly a Third of People in the US are Using Music Streaming Subscriptions
According to the 2020 Streaming Forward report from the US-based Digital Media Association (DiMA), and created in conjunction with Midia Research, in 2019, digital services saw US consumer spend on music streaming subscriptions hit $6.93 billion, up 25.2% year-on-year. This figure was generated via 87.5 million paid streaming accounts (as of the end of December 2019), says the report - shared by 99 million legitimate subscribers. Considering there are around 328 million people living in the US, this means that nearly a third of the country’s residents are now subscribers (whether they pay the bill directly or otherwise) to music streaming services. The report continues to state that there were a total of 116.7 million users of ad-supported audio streaming services in 2019. In total, music streaming services in the US – across audio ad-supported, video ad-supported plus subscription – generated $10.337 billion in 2019, up 20.6% year-on-year. Streaming Forward forecasts that the $10.3 billion seen from streaming in 2019 will rise to $13.9 billion in 2021 and $15.9 billion in 2024.
- The symbiosis of games and music.
- Henry Rollins interviews Steve Vai about creating music, playing technique, and lessons learned in the studio.
- BTS rules the Billboard Hot 100 as the first K-Pop group to debut at no. 1.
- The highlights of the VMAs 2020.
- How Bee Gees took their vision into a new era.
- Chloe x Halle deliver a sparkling performance at the 37th VMAs with "Ungodly Hour”.
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