Global Growth for Techstars Music in 2019

Techstars Music 2019 will invest $120k each into ten startups solving problems for the growing global music business — are you building a great company?

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It’s my favorite time of year — the beginning of the global search for the next class of 10 world-class music startups for Techstars Music 2019. Public applications are now OPEN, and my passport is in my pocket. In fact, I’m writing this from Sydney, Australia.

Over the next five months, Techstars Music will visit 15+ cities in more than 10 countries, looking for great teams solving real problems for the global music business. In December, we’ll invest in 10 startups ($120,000 USD each) and invite them to join us for our 13 week program in Los Angeles on February 4, 2019.

We’re looking for startups solving big problems in the realms of media personalization, e-commerce, live event security and experience, artist discovery and management, ticketing, new media creation, digital goods, artificial intelligence, big data analysis and back-end infrastructure.

Is your team solving one of these planet-sized problems in or around music and live events? If so, we want to meet you. SIGN UP HERE. The deadline for public applications is October 14, 2018. Have questions before you apply? Text me! Yes, really. Here’s the number: 1–323–538–3935.

And now, a couple of awesome announcements:

First, we’re excited to announce that AVEX Inc., one of the planet’s most powerful music and entertainment companies, just joined the Techstars Music Membership. A big part of the Techstars Music strategy is our deep cooperation with the global music business. We believe cooperation produces greater return on investment. Our member companies provide more than just capital; they run the program with us, helping at every step of the process, from selection to mentoring to business development and often, follow-on investment.

AVEX Inc. manages superstar artists, produces major festivals, operates music and video streaming services and owns and distributes music globally through its family of affiliated labels. It’s one of the most influential music companies on the planet, an innovative force in Japan, and an emerging investor in global startups.

We’re also happy to share we’ve expanded our relationship with Sony. Since the inception of the program, we’ve worked with multiple companies in the Sony portfolio, but now it’s official: Sony Music Entertainment Japan, Sony Innovation Fund and Sony Music Entertainment USA are now all active members of our day-to-day team. From the outside, you’ll notice it now says Sony on the website. On the inside, all of our portfolio companies will now have access to mentorship and strategic help from the broad array of Sony businesses.

So for 2019, the Techstars Music Member companies are Warner Music Group, Q Prime Management, Bill Silva Entertainment, Silva Artist Management, Sony, Concord Music, Royalty Exchange, RecoChoku and AVEX Inc. That’s a formidable team of artist managers, live event companies, streaming platforms, consumer product manufacturers and global rights-holders… all working to accelerate startups and attract more venture capital to the music tech ecosystem. We really couldn’t do this without them.

In addition to our member companies, Techstars Music startups also spend time with hundreds of world-class mentors from music, tech and venture capital who #GiveFirst to help our portfolio companies build their businesses.

Speaking of portfolio companies… after two years of investing we have some pretty interesting results to share. We’ve made investments into 21 startups thus far; 11 in 2017 and 10 in 2018. Here are some note-worthy facts:

TECHSTARS MUSIC 2017
• $91.6M combined cohort valuation
• $19.3M raised post-program (since February 2017, $10.5M prior)
• Notable investors: Foundry Group, Sony Innovation Fund; Greycroft, Khosla Ventures, Two Sigma Ventures, Passion Capital

TECHSTARS MUSIC 2018
$56M combined cohort valuation
• $6.8M raised post-program (since February 2018, $6.2M prior)
• Notable investors: Global Founders Fund, Live Nation/Ticketmaster, Amazon Alexa Fund, Pillar VC, Alven Capital

Want to read more about the amazing things our alumni are doing? Here’s a couple of recent articles:

JAAK, Class of 2017
BILLBOARD: How JAAK Is Looking to Solve The Metadata Problem With Blockchain Tech

Blink Identity, Class of 2018
VENTURE BEAT: Ticketmaster to trial facial recognition technology at live venues

Popgun, Class of 2017
ABC: How Machine Learning Might Change the Future of Popular Music

Amper Music, Class of 2017:
THE VERGE: How AI Music Is Changing The Way Hits Are Made

And finally a good summary of the 2018 program, just before our most recent Demo Day this past May: 
BILLBOARD: Techstars Music Startups Transforming Music Industry

2019 TECHSTARS MUSIC RECRUITING TOUR:

So now you know about us, and our growing track record for finding and accelerating the most interesting startups in music. 
Below are the dates and locations where we’ll be meeting with candidate companies. On many of these dates, we’ll be joined by both alumni companies and Techstars Music Members. Is your team solving a real problem for music? Want to meet with us and pitch your company? Click the dates below and signup!

September 10–12 — Singapore
September 13–15 — Tokyo, Japan
September 27 & 28 — Los Angeles, CA, USA
October 1–3 — Nashville, TN, USA
October 4 & 5 — Atlanta, GA, US
October 15 — Stockholm, Sweden

October 18 — London, England
October 22 — Paris, France
October 24 — Berlin , Germany
November 6 — New York, New York, USA
November 8 — Toronto, Canada

Ok… that’s enough from me. See you out there…

— Bob Moczydlowky, @bobmoz
Managing Director, Techstars Music

PS — Can’t leave you without a little bit of musical inspiration. This clip gets me teary every time. Let’s make some stuff. Let’s build some dreams together…