How Kobalt is simplifying the killer complexities of the music industry

Backed by over $ 200 million in VC funding, Kobalt is changing the acces the music industry does business and putting more money into musicians’ pockets in the process.

In Part I of this sequence, I sauntered through the company’s founding story and its overall design. There are two core thesis that Kobalt bet on: 1) that the switching to digital music could transform the way royalties are tracked and paid, and 2) that music stream will empower a developing middle class of DIY musicians who find success across countless niches.

How a Swedish saxophonist make Kobalt, the world’s next music unicorn

This article focuses on the composite mode royalties flow through the industry and how Kobalt is restructuring that process( while Part III is concentrated in music’s middle class ). The music industry passes on copyright administration and royalty collectings. If the system undermines — if people lose track of where vocals are being played and who is owed how much in royalties — everything halts.

Kobalt is as much a compliance tech company as it is a music company: it have already established a quasi “operating system” to more accurately and quickly handle this using software and a centralized approach to accumulations, upending a broken, inefficient system so everything can run more smoothly and predictably on top of it. The big question is whether it can maintain its initial guide in doing this, however.

The business of a song


Image via Getty Images/ Mykyta Dolmatov

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