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DIY Distribution Services also raising capital into the billions

In August, US-based DIY distribution platform DistroKidaccepted an investment from Insight Partners, valuing it at $1.3 billion. UnitedMasters has raised $50 million in new funding. Led by Andreessen Horowitz, the new round values the independent artist distribution platform at $550 million. The company’s latest funding round comes just six months after it secured a $50 million Series B investment, led by Apple with additional funding from existing backers, Google parent Alphabet, and Andreessen Horowitz.The Series B round followed the company’s $70m funding round led by Google/Alphabet in 2017.

UnitedMasters will use the new investment to fund its expansion into markets like Latin America, as well as for acquisitions. Launched in 2017 by Stoute, UnitedMasters provides music distribution services plus analytics and royalties tools. It has facilitated partnerships between indie artists and brands such as the NBA, ESPN, TikTok, Twitch, and more. UnitedMasters says that it currently has 1 million “artist partners” on its platform, and has worked with the likes of NLE Choppa, Lil Tecca, Tobe Nwigwe, Lil XXEL, and many others. UnitedMasters recently struck a new partnership with cryptocurrency platform Coinbase to give indie artists the ability to be paid in crypto through Coinbase’s new payroll product. UnitedMasters launched a new subscription tier in July last year, Select, that allows acts to keep 100% of their royalties from digital services. In August 2020, TikTok inked a deal with UnitedMasters for a full integration between both services directly through the TikTok app. That means that TikTok users will be able to distribute their music directly to other music streaming platforms from within the TikTok app.

Stoute told MBW that “to have Google, Andreessen Horowitz and Apple believe in the future of independent music is a great day for every independent company in the world”. “I don’t care if you’re in music or not,” he added. “This shows that independent creators have an opportunity now, better than they’ve ever had before, and there’s a spotlight on them. “The biggest companies in the world are rooting for them and making steps to make sure that they have the same opportunities as everyone else.”

-- With 1 million music partners Songs That Work is not exactly sure how independent musicians that do need support as it relates to growing their music footprint can be found and nurtured, but that is what our services are for. We will always provide the tools and instruction for you to grow your music earnings, brand and footprint. Check out our program for free.


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