UnitedMasters partners with Coinbase to let artists get paid in cryptocurrency

UnitedMasters Founder and CEO Steve Stoute

UnitedMasters has struck a new partnership with cryptocurrency platform Coinbase to give indie artists the ability to be paid in crypto through Coinbase’s new payroll product.

The announcement today (October 12) follows UnitedMasters’ news from August about other new finance tools for indie artists, one of which, launched in partnership with beatBread, enables the distributor to offer qualifying artists advances ranging from $1,000 to $1 million.

UnitedMasters also inked a finance-related partnership with Paperchain, which uses algorithms to predict an artist’s royalty earnings based on their latest streaming data.

Artists using UnitedMasters can now choose to be paid in US Dollars or in a cryptocurrency of their choice.

The artists can also use Coinbase’s full set of product offerings — including spending, earning, trading and borrowing.

UnitedMasters says that the goal is “to create more financial opportunities, equity and transparency to the dedicated, rising musicians utilizing our platform and to level the playing field so that they can stay independent and in control of their respective futures”.

Speaking to CNBC, UnitedMasters Founder and CEO Steve Stoute explained the decision to start offering payouts in crypto, stating that “payment optionality has been a big thing in this creator economy, and now [artists] are asking to be paid in crypto”.

CNBC also reports that UnitedMasters now has 1.2 million artists on its platform, that over 1 billion streams are being generated by these artists per month, and that 59% of artists on the platform are under 25.

In March, UnitedMasters announced the raise of a $50 million funding round, led by Apple and with additional financing from Alphabet and Andreessen Horowitz.

The news marked another significant financial milestone for New York-headquartered UnitedMasters, following the company’s $70m funding round led by Google/Alphabet in 2017.

Meanwhile, Coinbase also revealed in a blog post today that it plans to launch its own NFT platform, Coinbase NFT.

“As the financial sector continues to evolve and innovate, we’re committed to putting our artists in the best position to benefit from these changes.”

Steve Stoute, UnitedMasters 

UnitedMasters Founder and CEO Steve Stoute said: “Working with Coinbase to give independent artists the ability to be paid in crypto is a natural next step for us, using technology to ensure that the economics of the music business favor the creators behind it.

“As the financial sector continues to evolve and innovate, we’re committed to putting our artists in the best position to benefit from these changes.”

“We want to make it easy for every company to pay employees in crypto. This is the future of payroll.”

Surojit Chatterjee, Coinbase

Surojit Chatterjee, Chief Product Officer of Coinbase added: “Coinbase’s mission is to increase economic freedom in the world, and we applaud UnitedMasters efforts to level the playing field for their community of musical artists.

“We want to make it easy for every company to pay employees in crypto. This is the future of payroll.”


UnitedMasters, which has worked with the likes of NLE Choppa, Lil Tecca, Tobe Nwigwe, Lil XXEL, and many others, launched a new subscription tier in July last year called Select, that allows acts to keep 100% of their royalties from digital services.

In August 2020, TikTok inked a deal with UnitedMasters for a full integration between both services directly through the TikTok app.Music Business Worldwide