Today I’m speaking with Johan – co-founder of Revibe – a music streaming service specifically focused on electronic dance music.
Hi Johan, tell us about your background
I’m a self-taught web developer from Stockholm and, of course, a big fan of electronic music. I bought some expensive DJ gear many years ago and learned the basics but I ended up selling it to buy a new computer. So web design and development has always been my biggest interests – and to create something of your own is of course super amazing. When Magnus & Johan, the other co-founders, and I decided to start Revibe I also saw the opportunity to go outside my comfort zone and explore the whole entrepreneurship road which has been a really rewarding experience.
What is Revibe – and what problem are you solving?
It’s a streaming service focusing exclusively on electronic dance music. We’re the first niched music streaming service and we have integrated unique DJ tools that can be used to interact with the music. We have an Automixer that performs seamless beatmixing of all transitions. It can be compared to what you would expect to hear from a club DJ – the music never goes quiet!
If you want to control the mix yourself you can use our manual mixer with cool DJ functionality such as EQ, sound effects and loops.
We see a big problem in finding the music you are actually interested in. This EDM genres deserves a streaming service of its own instead of being left in the shade of all other mainstream music in the current streaming services. We also believe that users should be able to interact more with the music which they can’t do with other today.
I’ve played around with the web app, and it is really cool – and I can see myself spending a lot of time on it. Is there a risk that you can’t compete with Spotify?
Spotify, Rdio, Deezer and other larger services are of course difficult to compete with. We don’t have the same resources and financing, but we are not planning to be a new Spotify. Spotify is a bit like McDonald’s – it is for everyone. Revibe is not. As I said before, Revibe is for people who want more than just the possibility to play some tracks on the subway on their way to work.
Where are you getting the library from now – and what’s the plan for the future in terms of licensing deals?
Currently we’re running under a Beta license issued issued STIM and IFPI that makes gies us the right to test the technical platform on the Swedish market. The content is a collection of private libraries that will be replaced with licensed content when we go out of Beta. We have deals in place for the release but we are also negotiating to add even more content later this summer.
Have you spoken to any artists – and if so, how do they feel about Revibe?
Yes, both big and small artists and they are really excited about the product. Because of today’s technology it’s easy to get started with producing electronic music and the amount of daily releases is huge. So of course artists want to get their music out there and the more services available, the better. We are, in addition, looking at adding more promotional tools for artists and labels.
You’ve taken some funding and are working full-time on the project – what are the next steps for you guys?
We’ve been working full-time a year and a half now and we’re planning on doing it until we retire, with more talented people joining us. This summer we are moving out of Beta and releasing Revibe in the Nordics. We are also looking at raising more capital for a larger release in Europe. At the moment we’re five people working full-time but hopefully we will have doubled that figure by the end of the year.