In our new Royalty Tech Spotlight series we’ll be speaking to the minds behind some of the latest innovations in music royalties and rights related technology.
First up is Jarrett Hines, co-founder and CEO of Music Tech Works, the company behind music rights search engine rightsholder.io.
Where did the idea for rightsholder.io come from?
My co-founder, Bryson Nobles, and I have been working together for over a decade. Over the past couple of years, we have been brainstorming about the concept of rightsholder.io. At a music startup we previously worked at, we were helping songwriters manage and monetize their catalogs. Throughout that process, we realized we wanted the option to send songwriters data to a platform that would help generate more opportunities for sync licenses, but it never materialized.
“There is a huge amount of value that can be created when people understand who owns the rights to commercial music.”
There is a huge amount of value that can be created when people understand who owns the rights to commercial music. We understood that we possessed a unique set of skills, experience, and perspective, which eventually led us on the journey to build the rightsholder.io platform and make song ownership data easily accessible.
What does it do / how does it work?
At its core, righsholder.io is a search engine for commercial music ownership data. It tells you who owns the rights to what song, and how to contact the rights holders so that you can begin a licensing discussion.
Rightsholder.io pulls together the recording and composition ownership data for over 160 million songs from dozens of sources. Not only that, but we provide information on how a song has been previously used in a sync, if it has samples, and who has covered it. We make the data easily accessible via an intuitive search experience while also providing a comprehensive view of who owns a song and how it has been used, all in one place.
Who is it for?
Righsholder.io was designed with and for music supervisors, and others that routinely license music for TV/film, advertising, video game, and podcast productions. It helps them quickly find ownership information and eliminates the need to search multiple databases to try and piece this data together.
The underlying data and search capabilities that we’ve built help to power several solutions for enterprise customers as well. Rightsholder.io helps large platforms that utilize music in their products understand music ownership data at scale. We offer the ability to research hundreds of thousands, or millions, of songs at once. Our business intelligence tools and reports offer publishers a way to understand where their catalogs are registered around the world to ensure that they are maximizing their royalty collections. Not only that, but we help investment funds with catalog due diligence and spotting opportunities for them to increase their return on investment post-acquisition.
How does rightsholder.io contribute to the wider industry ecosystem?
We contribute to the wider industry ecosystem by cleaning, reconciling, and enhancing music ownership data and making it easily available. Rightsholder helps to get more songs licensed and significantly reduces the amount of time spent researching ownership information to help remove a major source of friction in the song licensing process.
“Rightsholder helps to get more songs licensed and significantly reduces the amount of time spent researching ownership information to help remove a major source of friction in the song licensing process.”
What’s your 2021 highlight?
It is hard to choose only one highlight since we were fortunate enough to have seen a tremendous amount of growth this year. At the beginning of 2021, we were selected as one of 11 companies to be a part of Techstars Music Accelerator. In that program, we were able to form deep relationships that helped us understand the data issues plaguing the industry and how we can build solutions through our platform to address them.
Not only that, but through new partnerships and sources, we have increased the amount of ownership data we are processing by 4x and have over 160 million songs in our internal database. To cap off the year, we were honored to be selected as the top Music Marketing & Data/Analytics startup at the 2021 Midemlab Startup Competition.
What’s next for rightsholder.io?
We have a lot of exciting plans for 2022. The rightsholder.io search engine will be exiting private beta and will be generally available early next year. In addition, we will be releasing a Playlist Search tool (currently in beta) that will allow you to provide us with an Apple Music or Spotify playlist, and we will be able to return a song ownership report in minutes for up to 1000 tracks.
Enjoyed this article? Why not check out:
- The Big Clean Up: How Do We Improve Music Rights Data?
- Synchtank Summit Takeaways: Data Sharing, Standardization & Supporting the Creative Process
- Synchtank Report – Drowning in Data: Royalty Accounting and Systems in the Digital Age