In our Royalty Tech Spotlight series we speak to the minds behind some of the latest innovations in music royalties and rights related technology.
Based in Chicago and Nashville, Mozaic.io (formerly known as Jammber) is a global payment platform that provides smart contracts that automatically split income among co-creators.
We caught up with founder and CEO Marcus Cobb (pictured above) to discuss the company’s mission to get creators accurately credited and paid for their work, and to become the de facto platform for sharing royalties, payments and credits.
Where did the idea for Jammber / Mozaic come from?
I was recording and writing in a music studio in Chicago for years and became really good friends with an engineer there named Brian. I saw him progress so quickly from being an intern to being one of the best engineers in the city. This studio was state of the art, everyone recorded there: Chance the Rapper, Kanye, Mariah Carey, Michelle Williams, The Black Keys… just a massive roster for a Midwest studio. And Brian’s skills matched the level of talent. Still, he had to make his bones until he could be a lead engineer on a big project. It’s so reputation based.
One day, in walks Timbaland and Justin Timberlake as they toured through Chicago and my buddy Brian got to be lead engineer. He killed it! Months later the record label realized they didn’t have Brian’s full name to give him credit for the album release. Even though Brian only missed the email by a few minutes it was too late. He was dropped from the credits because they had to rush it. No credit. No grammy nomination. No bump in reputation. Nothing. Like it never happened.
I remember being so impressed with Brian’s character when he just went back to work the next day but, to me – it was really, really tragic. That credit would’ve changed Brian’s life overnight. Jammber was born out of the idea that technology could help creatives and collaborators get paid and credit for their work without that ever happening again. After Brian, we learned it happened all the time all over the world. We are starting to change that.
What does it do / how does it work?
First, I want to say Jammber has lived a lot of lives. The music industry has a steep learning curve and it generally takes startups about 7 years to find their stride in this space. In that time we’ve become experts in royalties, attribution and workflows around music. Really, around any creative project. We’ve created a few cool tools but the most powerful offering, by far, is Mozaic.io. Mozaic is a global payment platform, almost like a modern PayPal, but specialized in moving money and attribution between collaborators all over the world. Distributors use our API to offer features like split payments, automated recoupables and attaching project info to payments. We can get most teams sending test payments within 2 days. Publishers, record labels and other companies use Mozaic to send mass payouts globally in a more affordable and streamlined way.
“Mozaic is a global payment platform, almost like a modern PayPal, but specialized in moving money and attribution between collaborators all over the world.”
Who is it for?
I think our secret sauce is that our products are specifically designed for companies who pay creatives. They care about aesthetics, they often have little patience for administrative tasks. They are collaborating across borders like never before. And they are becoming more sophisticated on their agreements on things like sharing royalties. Over the years we’ve established design considerations to help us deliver products that creatives will love and use. Even though our tools are somewhat administrative, they don’t feel like it and that is something we’re very proud of.
How does Mozaic contribute to the wider industry ecosystem?
The industry ecosystem is only as healthy as our joint ability to pay people and give them credit for their work – efficiently and quickly. I view it like farming. Creatives and their collaborators are like these fields waiting to thrive. Payments and credits are the water… the irrigation they need to grow. That’s why it’s a mission so close to our hearts. But just as important is getting music companies up and sending payments as quickly and cost effectively as possible. I don’t know of any payment platform who can board companies as quickly and easily as we can.
“The industry ecosystem is only as healthy as our joint ability to pay people and give them credit for their work – efficiently and quickly.”
2022 highlight so far?
Launching Mozaic at MusicBiz 2022 was a huge accomplishment. It had been 2 years in the making. As a payment platform, key metrics for us are payout volume and payment velocity. As we’ve launched Mozaic this year we very quickly ramped up billions of dollars in contracted payouts. It’s extraordinary for a startup. People genuinely love the platform and I receive consistent praise about our support and account management teams. We have a long way to go but we’re happy with the ingredients and we hope to continually improve at scale.
What’s next for the company?
Most notably, Jammber is expected to rebrand to Mozaic as we move to serve the broader Creator Economy and adjacent needs for independent contractors and ad-hoc teams of any kind. I’ve learned the music industry really sets a lot of the trends. Especially on the business use cases. Now we’re working with clients from gaming and podcasts to influencers of all kinds. It’s our goal for Jammber, soon-to-be Mozaic, to be the de facto platform for sharing royalties, payments and credits. It’s my hope that as we grow there will be fewer and fewer Brian’s out there not getting proper credit and payment for their work. And that is very, very important to all of us who work here.
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