Synchtank client ClicknClear is a London-based start-up aiming to take advantage of an untapped revenue stream estimated to be worth over $670 million globally across a number of sports. The platform provides producers with pre-cleared music to license for use in sports competitions and is currently looking to work with rightsholders.
Hi Chantal, can you tell us a little bit about your background and what motivated you to launch ClicknClear?
I studied Commercial Music at University of Westminster where I started my first business, Synergy Sounds, a music production company catering for Cheerleading and Dance. I then started working part-time at CueSongs for a number of years where I learnt all about music licensing and the pre-cleared licensing model. When Sony Records sued a music producer in the US for infringing copyrights in Cheerleading music, the governing body released a statement saying commercial music could not be used without a license, but they were still allowing the use of Cover music. This is when my business partner and I decided to do something about it and created ClicknClear, the first solution to provide an instant licensing offering for this market. As we delved in deeper, we saw that the opportunity rose beyond Cheerleading and is a problem amongst a number of different sports worldwide.
What makes the platform unique?
The platform allows the end user to instantly license music without having to seek approval, which just isn’t feasible for the end user in these markets. Our USP is really the rights we have required and our team, who have a very unique experience in sports, music mixing and licensing.
What’s the model of the platform? How do rightsholders get paid?
It’s a pre-cleared micro-licensing solution so the real money is in volume. In the US Cheerleading market alone, we estimate there to be a requirement of over 1 million licenses every year. We charge a license fee per use and the rightsholders get a % of that.
“In the US Cheerleading market alone, we estimate there to be a requirement of over 1 million licenses every year.”
Cheerleading is your first area of focus – can you give us some insight into this market?
Cheerleading is our first market since that is where the lawsuit happened and my business partner and I are both experienced Cheerleaders and have owned music production companies. This market alone has a potential for over $50M, which is only 7% of our global market across other sports. Since the lawsuit already happened, the issue is still fresh in people’s minds, which helps us sell the solution.
“This market alone has a potential for over $50M, which is only 7% of our global market across other sports.”
ClicknClear already has deals with 60 rightsholders to make 5,000 tracks available through its service. Can you talk about some of those partnerships and how other rightsholders can work with you?
We are always keen to work with new rightsholders and are constantly reaching out and discussing new deals. We currently have 5k tracks live but have the rights to 10s of thousands of tracks which we are working through to determine what is fully cleared and who else we need to speak to. We already work with Hospital Records, Believe Digital, Sentric Music, Reservoir Media, and have approved a major publisher.
You mention that this is an extremely scaleable revenue stream – just how big do you think the growth potential for this sector is?
As mentioned earlier we believe the total market size across just 4 sports is $670M+.
There’s a lot of confusion regarding music rights in sports, resulting in a huge amount of copyright infringement and even an illegal trade in fake licenses. One of your goals is to encourage compliance within these industries – how do you plan on getting your message out there?
We have an educational initiative, which we are working on and have already run webinars and workshops in the past. Our main focus at the moment is speaking to the governing bodies in each country to ensure compliance and then target the market through various marketing methods. We also have an enforcement programme we plan on implementing which would check and verify licensing at each competition.