UnitedMasters, a startup record label and distribution company, has announced that it has reached a $550 million valuation after a new infusion of capital led by Andreessen Horowitz.
In a press release, it was announced that the New York-based company raised a $50 million Series C, which they said they will be using to advance their operations overseas. What’s more, they said, their music business model is one that’s different from so-called “traditional” record labels, in that they rely on such social media platforms as TikTok to bolster their artists’ presence. In the UnitedMasters business model, artists retain the rights to their masters, and the company takes a fee for licensure and other opportunities.
In this way, the company makes money from licensing, while the artist gets the backing of a company with a record label type of service behind it.
Additionally, AfroTech previously reported that the company also has partnered with Coinbase to provide cryptocurrency capabilities to artists who request their payment in the digital coin. Digital Music News reports that the company also has a TikTok deal that “encompasses initiatives designed to enable ‘brands of all sizes to find even more sounds available to use on’ the short-form video-sharing platform, on which high-profile acts are continuing to develop a presence.”
“Every day we ask ourselves what more we can be doing to support our artists in finding success in a creator economy that often leaves the actual creators behind. Alongside our partners at a16z, we are going to double down on this mission, empowering artists to create and earn through reach, technology and partnerships,” said Steve Stoute of UnitedMasters in a statement.
“UnitedMasters’ impressive growth over the last year underscores that Steve and the team not only understand what the future of the music business looks like but also how to meet the demands of both independent artists and fans simultaneously,” David George, general partner at Andreessen Horowitz said, according to a press release.
It’s important to note that in March of 2021, AfroTech told you that the Black-owned company raised $50 million in a funding round led by Apple.