The judging panel consisted of myself, Martin Goldschmidt, Chairman of the Cooking Vinyl Group, Davin McDermott, Director and Head of Music at RSM Tenon and Keith Jopling, Leading Music Industry Consultant. (Panellist bios can be found here). For sake of objectivity judges were not allowed to vote for any company they have any direct involvement with.
We were inundated with applicants and after whittling down the original list to meet the entry requirements to 23 companies (we were exclusively looking at early stage music start-ups) we went through a lengthy and difficult process scoring and assessing them. Each company was scored against 8 criteria: Product Idea, Business Model, Uniqueness, Competitive Positioning, Market Need, Strategic Vision, Team, and Execution. Companies were scored out of three in each category and a weighted average total score was created from each of those sub categories.
The core objective of the showcase was to give invaluable to exposure to early stage companies who don’t yet have the traction and/or resources to achieve it themselves. So although we are announcing winners we are also publishing details of all the 23 finalist companies. Also, we wanted this to be more than just a beauty parade. With such a wealth of collective music business experience in our panel) each entrant has received directly from us their complete scores and judges feedback, including positives, negatives and recommendations.
With no further ado, here are the results of the 2012 Music Industry Blog Start-Up Showcase.
1st Place: Soniqplay
In their own words: “Soniqplay has developed an interactive music platform which enables easy creation of engaging music-based apps for brand and media owners – we turn consumers into content creators.”
We liked Soniqplay because: Soniqplay have great looking products coupled with good market traction and an impressive team that gets the music sector. Their combination of vision, robust business model and solid execution impressed the judges. The only concern that the panel had was whether Soniqplay was able to differentiate sufficiently in what is a relatively crowded market segment. But with already impressive traction, Soniqplay look well placed to meet this challenge head on.
2nd Place: Definition Music
In their own words: “Definition Music Limited is a 360 Music company that focuses on development of IP and Copyright through the early development of writers and artists.”
We liked Definition Music because: Definition Music have identified a market opportunity for the next generation of indie record label, one that is designed around the modern landscape of digital tools and networks rather than simply incorporating them. Definition Music’s emphasis on focusing on a few artists is a core asset but also underpins one of the panel’s concerns: whether the model is scalable enough to get the hits.
Joint 3nd Place: Synchtank
In their own words: “We provide a powerful web based software platform for companies to manage and exploit music catalogues for synch purposes.”
We liked Synchtank because: Synchtank have successfully identified a niche but clear and largely un-addressed market need. They have backed this up with a clear vision, solid execution, proven traction and organic commercial success.
Joint 3nd Place: Breakrs.com
In their own words: “Breakrs is an online music entertainment community for fans to find and “break” the best new music.”
We liked Breakrs.com because: Breakrs.com combine good vision, bold ambition and meet both consumer and industry needs. Judges were though concerned about Breakrs.com’s ability to execute on its roadmap and the ability to build a community audience outside of the established social platforms.
Congratulations to the podium place winners of Music Industry Blog Start-Up Showcase 2012. Thank you also to all of the judges. Watch this space for details of the next Start-Up Showcase.
Here are the high level overviews and placings of all 23 Start-Up Showcase finalists. Contact details for all of these companies are available on their respective websites but if you would like a direct introduction to any of them then please email me at musicindustryblog AT gmail DOT COM.
|Company Name||Overall Score||Express Elevator Pitch||URL|
|Soniqplay||2.40||Soniqplay has developed an interactive music platform which enables easy creation of engaging music-based apps for brand and media owners – we turn consumers into content creators.||http://www.soniqplay.com/|
|Definition Music||2.38||Definition Music Limited is a 360 Music company that focuses on development of IP and Copyright through the early development of writers and artists.||www.definitionmusic.com|
|Synchtank||2.30||We provide a powerful web based software platform for companies to manage and exploit music catalogues for synch purposes.||www.synchtank.net|
|Breakrs.com||2.30||Breakrs is an online music entertainment community for fans to find and “break” the best new music.||Breakrs.com|
|Crowd.FM||2.29||crowd.fm helps event promoters list their events online, whilst making it easier for them to connect with their audience and fans through the web and social media.||http://crowd.fm|
|MixMeIn||2.07||Mix Me In’s SocialMusic Player monetizes and engages the 1.5 Billion Fans of the top 100 Artists within Facebook, Google+ and other Social Media by allowing fans to instantly create and share custom versions of songs by their favorite artists.||www.mixmein.com|
|Dysonics||2.05||Dysonics headphone technologies reinvigorate the music industry by bringing a “live” quality and immersive experience to existing content and introduce new content that is optimized for headphones.||www.dysonics.com|
|ialbums||1.99||A content rich music player that provides an enhanced music listening experience, allowing the user to listen beyond the music.||www.ialbums.com|
|Eye In The Sky||1.94||Created by musicians and music fans, Eye in the Sky Collective is building a new, more sustainable model for the music industry- one that empowers artists to keep all of their music rights, 100% of their profit and build a long-term career while enabling fans to have a unique music discovery platform||http://EyeintheSky.org|
|Beefm.com||1.88||With BeeFM, Facebook becomes the largest social music service in the world.||http://www.beefm.com|
|Wavo||1.87||A social network and ecosystem for music that captures and integrates the full-range of the digital music experience for fans, artists and concert promoters alike.||Wavo.me|
|Video Star||1.86||Frontier makes mobile software for the casual creation of music videos, enabling users to creatively engage with the music they love in an entertaining and social way.||www.VideoStarApp.com|
|Audio Vroom||1.85||We scan your digital profiles on music services, social networks and mobile devices to create a custom profile together with tailored music and other content, which gets better with feedback on our curated choices.||http://www.audiovroom.com/|
|StereoGrid||1.80||StereoGrid allows artists to easily deliver & share their music with music bloggers and press in a measured and controlled way.||www.stereogrid.com|
|Downloads Now!||1.77||We sell high resolution music in a new format 40 times the size as mp3s and our customers pay us $5 per single and $50 per album.||DownloadsNow.net|
|Muzieo||1.76||Muzieo is a mobile-based music social discovery service that brings Artists and Fans together via gaming mechanics.||http://muzieo.com/|
|Songdrop||1.74||Pinterest for streaming music.||http://songdrop.com|
|Stereomood||1.74||stereomood is the crowd-sourced music aggregator that turns your mood into music, suggesting the best playlist for every moment of your life.||http://www.stereomood.com|
|TheBandGram||1.70||The BandGram is a mobile app that will let you send a clip of any song as an MMS message – think photo messages for music!||www.thebandgram.com|
|WaltGully.com||1.60||We Make Great Music||www.waltgully.com|
|DimSong||1.57||DimSong transforms any song into an interactive listening experience, allowing you to control the arrangement of a song in real-time so that no matter what you’re doing – your music listens to you.||www.dimsong.com|
|Minorbeat||1.47||Minorbeat connects professionals who currently work with each other, and gives them a digital hub to host songs and roles associated with the project.||minorbeat.com|
|musyc.tv||1.45||a. musyc.tv is a live video broadcasting platform for musicians – think Ustream or Justin.tv with only musician broadcasters.||musyc.tv|