Belfast Telegraph

Songbook launch will allow public to invest in music

The firm claims to be the first ‘royalty revenue’ investment scheme in the UK.

Music fans can put their money where their mouths under the Songbook scheme (Isabel Infantes/PA)
Music fans can put their money where their mouths under the Songbook scheme (Isabel Infantes/PA)

A British company has launched the first financially regulated music investment platform, enabling the public to inject cash into new releases made by artists.

Songbook claims to be the first “royalty revenue” investment scheme in the UK, where fans and aficionados can earn money the same way record labels do.

Investors will earn royalties every time a song is downloaded or streamed, placed into TV, film, commercials and games. In addition, income will be received every time the songs are performed at a live venue, broadcast on television, radio, online, in public spaces, hotels, shops or restaurants.

The brainchild of Chris Read, Songbook has teamed up with FCA-regulated Thornbridge Investment Management to offer the service.

Alongside Mr Read, Songbook’s key shareholder is early stage investor The Garage Soho, which has invested in firms such as Lastminute.com and made.com.

Songbook’s chairman is music industry veteran Keith Harris, who is known for his work with Marvin Gaye, Diana Ross and Stevie Wonder.

In this streaming age many music fans want to have a tangible connection to the music that they enjoy. Keith Harris

Mr Read said: “Hitting play is no longer enough. Fans want something more, something deeper, they want to connect with the artist and share in that artist’s success – be a real player in the music industry earning real money.”

Through their vested interest in the songs, Songbook said that fans will be incentivised to promote artists across their social networks to help build an artist’s audience, helping drive income for both artists and themselves.

This, Mr Read believes, will answer two of the biggest industry problems for artists – cash flow and marketing.

“In this streaming age many music fans want to have a tangible connection to the music that they enjoy and what better connection is there than being able to invest in getting it made, with the possibility of making some money back. This is a very timely idea,” Mr Harris added.

The minimum investment per campaign is £10 and while there is no upper limit, in order to comply with regulatory requirements, individuals wishing to invest more than £1,000 will be subject to stricter checks.

Songbook has already partnered with the likes of Abbey Road, Absolute Label Services, Believe Digital, Miloco Studios and Hoxton Vinyl.

The platform is launching with singer songwriter One Lone Boy.

PA

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