Web3 entertainment company Hume has raised $11.7 million in cash, allowing it to fund its expansion including plans to set up what it calls a fan-to-metastar engagement platform.
The startup said it will use the money to establish a roster of virtual artists known as “metastars,” who exist in the digital and physical world.
A portion of the proceeds will also go towards hiring talents across the company’s engineering, creative, music business and marketing teams and scale the company’s vision in redefining what it means to be an artist and fan today, Los Angeles-based Hume said.
Investment firm TCG Crypto led the funding round, with participation from Collab+Currency, Winklevoss Capital, Gemini Frontier Fund, Gmoney, Flamingo DAO, Noise DAO, LAO DAO, Distributed Global, Rahilla Zafar, Evan Bogart, and Cooper Turley.
“The web3 music space isn’t just introducing new monetization models, it’s introducing entirely new genres and experiences. Through this, fans will become more deeply connected with their favorite artists and the moments that propel that passion… We believe that Hume’s approach will be the driving force in this next evolution of the music business,” Jarrod Dicker, partner at TCG Crypto, said.
“The next big landmine in the metaverse is music, and it needs artists the same way our physical world does.”
The fundraising comes as Hume doubles down on its web3 approach in blending music, digital identity, and storytelling to develop metastars.
“The next big landmine in the metaverse is music, and it needs artists the same way our physical world does,” Hume said.
The company, founded by a team with experience at Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group, Nike, and Google, operates a Web3 label and an in-house entertainment studio for its ‘metastars’.
The company’s metastars are developed in-house with a team of writers, producers, storytellers, animators, promoters, publicists, and vocalists who have worked for artists like Selena Gomez, G-Eazy, Saweetie, Dua Lipa, and Demi Lovato.
Last year, Hume debuted its first Web3 artist, angelbaby, who eventually released their first single, NFT, and performed at Art Basel, FLUF Haus LA, and SXSW. The metastar’s NFTs and music have risen to the #1 spot on OpenSea, web3 streaming platform Audius and Flufworld’s scene and sound collection.
With its goal to increase collaboration with fans, Hume says that it plans to offer fans a chance to gain direct access into an artist’s music curation process. The company is also rolling out a platform called “The Spot,” powered by Hume Genesis NFT, allowing fans to actively influence artists’ decisions by voting on single releases, merch, and others.
“Through new business models and incentive mechanisms, the web3 music space has made huge strides in redefining what it means to be a fan. But we believe Hume is doing something entirely different: redefining what it means to be an artist, too,” says Goldberg, an investor at TCG Crypto, said.
“Today’s record labels are not inherently built for web3, and the industry is filled with bureaucracy and politics that often limit the connection between artists and fans.”
David Beiner, Hume
Speaking about the fan-to-artist model, Hume co-founder and CEO David Beiner, says: “Today’s record labels are not inherently built for Web3, and the industry is filled with bureaucracy and politics that often limit the connection between artists and fans. We created Hume to build a world of metaverse native virtual artists and create a platform that harnesses NFTs in a way that redefines the fan-to-artist relationship.”
The fundraising follows the recent launch of the company’s first NFT collection, Hume Genesis, available to OpenSea. The NFTs give holders the chance to influence the lives and music of future metastars.
The Web3 concept, which decentralizes ownership and control and promotes community collaboration, has gained popularity in recent years.
It has become more intertwined with the music industry as investors pour billions of dollars worth of investment in platforms that offer Web3 music services.
“Web3 is a really interesting way for music services to give more autonomy to the artist,” Con Raso, Co-Founder and MD of specialist B2B music technology firm Tuned Global, said in a panel of Web3 experts at the Sandbox Music Summit in London in July.
The producer !llmind told MBW in an article last month of his belief that Web3 “can fix most, if not all of the music industry’s issues when it comes to finances and business”.Music Business Worldwide