Abbey Road Red recently announced the two exciting new start-ups (Audoo & MyPart) joining our Music Tech Incubator Programme. To provide a chance for readers to learn more about Audoo, we caught up with Founder & CEO, Ryan Edwards, to ask him some questions around the company’s vision, the inspiration behind the vision and the fantastic team they have assembled – read on to find out more.
What is Audoo?
We are a technology company working to ensure every artist and composer is recognised, then paid for the broadcasting of their works, every time their music is played in commercial premises.
What are you developing?
We have created a small device that plugs into commercial premises, such a shops, restaurants, bars, stadiums and gyms to capture the music played – like a smart meter for music. We create a digital fingerprint and meta-tag for each of the songs played, identify them and report the data back to Performance Rights Organisations (PROs). This means that they can calculate royalty payments accurately and fairly.
What was the motivation / trigger?
Over recent years I’ve built a career in the technology industry, holding senior positions at Visa Europe, Grapple Mobile, Bink and Vodafone. However, before that I was a musician who achieved small commercial success as the drummer for a band called The Lines. We had a UK top 10 hit with our song Domino Effect and in 2017 when I was walking through a popular department store on London’s Oxford Street, I heard our song being played. I checked my royalty account some months later and found that I was never paid for the performance so began to wonder how PRO’s monitor and track these types of broadcast. After initial research, I came to understand that historically, PROs pay a lot of royalties based on popular radio play and manual data-entry. As a result, artists and composers can miss out on their owed royalties entirely. I’ve always been an innovative person with huge ambition, so decided it was time to create this company and tackle the challenge for the industry.
Tell us more about the team you have put together to tackle this issue
I consider myself very fortunate to have the incredible team that I do. I always say that one of the best things about building your own company is that you can hand-pick the team you want, a team that you know are best suited to deliver. Whether it’s bringing on dedicated people that you’ve worked with before, such as our amazing Marketing team, Greg Watts (CMO) and Jess O’Brien (Marketing Manager), who I worked with at Visa Europe and Bink, or people within my network that I have aspired to work with, an example being our COO, Glynn Gordon. With over 25 years of leadership experience In operations, product development and manufacturing, Glynn has established a number of businesses and has a passion for developing and delivering innovation.
For such an early stage business, we also have an incredible Advisory team, from Greg Gormley (Non-Exec Director) who raised over £30m at loyalty challenger Bink to Nigel Elderton (current Chairman of PRS for Music and European President of Peermusic), Rick Riccibono (Ex-VP of BMI) and Chris Herbert (who created the Spice Girls, and managed the likes of 5ive and Hear’Say).
We also see ourselves as having an ‘extended team’ with our PR partner (PHA), Legal partner (New Media Law), Accountants (Ross Brooke), Technical Design partner (Absolute Design) and many more… The team are extremely versatile, bringing with them unique expertise, energy and most important of all… passion.
Why Abbey Road Red?
Abbey Road Red is the leading music tech specific incubation programme, it’s without a doubt the best for the space that we’re in – we have turned down over 20 incubators/accelerators over the past year, this is the only one we wanted to work with.
We were actually introduced to Isabel, Karim & Hash through the Department of International Trade at the beginning of the year and from the moment we met they were instantly aligned with our vision. It made sense on both sides for us to work together and enhance Audoo’s offering.
What are your long-term goals?
Like all start-ups… world domination!
But on a serious note, we have already created strong relationships with PRO’s around the world. We’re aiming to launch our UK pilot in 2020, and from there we will start to roll out our technology with the most passionate and innovative PRO’s who want to lead the way.
We also hope to open a number of local offices as each territory goes live, continuing our growth and desire to work with the best talent.
Where can we find out more about you?
Our social channels are the best place to keep up to date with all that we’re up to. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn (@audoohq). Or if you’re feeling friendly, drop us an email directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.