Shazam Scoops Up $30M To Increase Partnerships, Now Valued At $1BN+
Music discovery agency Shazam has taken in a brand new spherical of financing, scooping up $30 million of funding — in a deal which values the enterprise at greater than $1 billion, it stated yesterday.
The buyers within the spherical are usually not being disclosed however at the very least some are new to the enterprise, and Chairman Andrew Fischer informed Bloomberg that “a few billionaires” participated in its newest financing. Shazam‘s prior buyers embrace DN Capital and KPCB.
The London-based mostly firm has branched out from music discovery in recent times, and now self describes as a media engagement enterprise — increasing into TV present and advert tagging because it seeks to develop past its audio recognition roots.
Flush with new financing, increasing its partnerships program is definitely on the playing cards for Shazam. “Just lately we’ve introduced a lot of partnerships which have helped us increase into retail, radio and cinema in North America. A part of the brand new funding will assist us present extra of those alternatives as we proceed to make it simpler for Shazam customers to interact with content material and types,” Fisher advised TechCrunch.
The expansion of on-line music streaming providers which erode conventional music gross sales (the place Shazam makes a minimize), and rivals pushing into the audio discovery area — corresponding to Fb launching its personal audio recognition providing final Might — lend extra urgency to Shazam’s enterprise enlargement efforts.
It evidently needs to be the digital layer that precedes and allows all types of retail exercise, not simply music purchases — lining its enterprise up towards the likes of Amazon, which set out comparable level-and-buy ambitions by way of its Hearth Telephone’s Firefly function final yr. Startups are additionally sensing worth in the area, with the likes of Peekster launching a ‘Shazam for print media’ final yr. The ubiquity of smartphones and the rise of m-commerce are the driving elements all these companies are aiming to capitalize on.
Shazam stated the brand new funding will help “continued evolution and speedy progress” following a yr through which it famous clocking up “consumer milestones, elevated service capabilities and enlargement into new market sectors”. It now stories some one hundred million month-to-month lively customers of its cellular apps — so round a seventh the dimensions of cellular messaging big WhatsApp (700M MAUs), and virtually double the dimensions of Spotify (60M MAUs).
Requested whether or not Shazam plans to make use of a few of its financing to hurry enlargement by making acquisitions, Fischer stated: “We now have a really robust stability sheet and have the capability for acquisitions if we consider they’ll add vital worth to the Shazam Group.”
The enterprise was based again in 2002 and initially enabled music discovery on 2G cell phones by making a name to take heed to the audio after which texting the identify of the monitor again — charging for the service. However with the rise of smartphones and apps Shazam dropped that charging mannequin, switching to monetizing by way of affiliate music gross sales.
It added a music streaming providing inside its apps, beginning in 2012. And was built-in into Apple’s Siri in iOS eight final yr. It has additionally expanded its capabilities to have the ability to determine different kinds of content material — resembling print advertisements, QR codes, packaged items and barcodes — opening the enterprise to monetizing a number of kinds of retail exercise.
The brand new funding might be funneled in the direction of furthering these enlargement efforts — or to “improve the universe of what’s Shazamable”, as CEO Wealthy Riley put it in a press release.
“Our transfer into a number of new environments in 2014 has allowed our customers to hook up with extra points of their world whereas enabling our companions and advertisers to succeed in our large and engaged consumer base like by no means earlier than,” he added.