We have big and exciting news at Topspin today: News of a substantial new strategic investment, news of a product partnership that will bring fans and artists closer together in a new consumer service, and news of a new CEO and a whole bunch of new open positions on our team.
Bear with me, and I’ll explain it all in detail. As you’ve likely heard, Beats Electronics (known to you and me as Beats By Dre, makers of those truly ubiquitous high-end headphones and speakers) recently bought the streaming music service MOG and plan to release a re-branded streaming service in 2013. This new service, which was officially announced today is being developed under the creative direction of Trent Reznor, who knows a thing or two about great music experiences and marketing.
Topspin has done a deal to become the artist toolset for this platform, and Daisy has made a substantial strategic investment in Topspin. Our plan is to set the standard for how consumer music services can integrate and benefit artists.
Here’s an example: When Trent Reznor uses Topspin to release music and merch on his website, his products should appear inside the streaming services, where the millions of fans listening to his catalog of songs should have the ability to connect and hear from Trent directly when he has new music, merchandise, and tour dates.
The core of this partnership, then, is a shared belief that streaming services should do a better job helping fans discover artists and connect with them directly to buy merch, tickets and other products. And so, Topspin GoDirect will become the way the Daisy service gets photos, videos and products from artists, and both companies will work together to make sure fans see those products when they listen to songs. This new partnership with Daisy is a big step forward in a process that began with our integration with Artists.MTV (which allows artists to claim their artist page and submit songs and videos to the network), expanded recently with the launch of YouTube merch link annotations (which allow Topspin artists to place product buy links inside YouTube videos), and is available to all app developers via the ArtistLink API.
How do I know the two companies will work well together? That’s the next part of our news. As of today, Ian Rogers is the new CEO of Daisy. It’s a great fit, one that sees Ian return to building music streaming services while at the same time having a real mandate to make sure the artist/fan connection in those services is real. Ian stays involved at Topspin by remaining on our board of directors and serving as Exec Chairman.
Topspin’s COO, Jeremy Bellinghausen, whom we hired six months ago after he served as President of Orbitz Worldwide’s Hotel Club division, will become our new CEO. The rest of our awesome team stays the same. Well, stays the same until it gets bigger. In fact, we’re hiring all over the company.
We need Dev-Ops Engineers, we need Rails Engineers, we need a customer support specialist in London, and we need a new VP of Finance in our Santa Monica office. Interested? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll chat.
Our goal for Topspin GoDirect is to let artists post once and publish their offers and info everywhere, and we’re working like crazy to add more valuable distribution partners in the weeks, months and years to come. And… we’re also getting set to expand beyond music. Did you know that two of our top 10 earning artists in 2012 were filmmakers? It’s true. Watch this space at Sundance next week, as I’m going to release as much of the financial and fan data as possible from our favorite film project, Stacy Peralta’s Bones Brigade: An Autobiography. It’s an eye-opener.
Ok, that’s a lot. Thanks for reading this far. We hope you are as excited as we are. If you still have questions about any of this, call me. Seriously. I’ve set up a special hotline phone number (thanks, Burner!) just to talk to artists, partners, press, prankers, job candidates… anyone. 310-321-4642. Send me a text. Call and leave a message. I’ll call you back. The line is open.
P.S. To download the official press release click here.