How this app is bringing payment transparency to the music industry

Business Products & Services
Los AngelesCA 
Company size:
12.5 M

If you're an independent musician, it's never been easier to drop an album. Streaming platforms like Spotify, YouTube, and Apple Music let artists distribute their music directly to fans. This new model has shaken up the music industry in a number of positive ways for musicians--but it has also come with some major headaches. Tracking payments from streams for every service distributing your music, along with the revenue splits you might owe to any collaborators, has turned into the most tedious of accounting tasks. Stem co-founders Milana Rabkin, Tim Luckow, and Jovin Cronin-Wilesmith noticed this emerging problem and decided to team up and build a way for artists--whether they're dropping songs or films--to easily manage the financial side of their business from an online dashboard. In exchange for a 5 percent transaction fee, Stem distributes content to streaming platforms including Apple, Spotify, SoundCloud, and YouTube, collects the revenue earned on each platform, and pays out the earnings via PayPal to anyone who had a hand in the creation process. The service is still in private beta but it already has same famous fans: DJ Jazzy Jeff is a customer, and investors include Mark Cuban, Gary Vaynerchuk's investment arm, and Scooter Braun (who has represented Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande). --Lindsay Blakely