A look at Musiversal

Hi everyone,

Have you ever recorded a song before? No?

It’s incredibly hard.

That’s why we’re diving into Musiversal, a company making the recording process way easier.

Musiversal gives artists access to the world’s most talented session musicians. They’re raising money via WeFunder to take their $1m+ business to the next level.

This is a fun, unique, and interesting company.

Let’s dive into the sound of music to discover what Musiversal is all about.

Summary

  • Investment type: Convertible note
  • Pre-raise valuation: $15m ($12m early bird)
  • Accreditation: Both non-accredited and accredited investors welcome
  • Minimum investment: $100
  • Geos: Worldwide
  • Investment horizon: 5+ years
  • Website: musiversal.com
  • Investment Link: wefunder.com/musiversal

Musiversal’s fundraising round closes April 30

Song writing is harder than you think

I’m a musician myself and love creating and recording complex songs. But it is extremely hard.

Sure, some musicians are  freaks of nature . But for most, bringing a song to life is both time-consuming and costly.

You need to be able to play multiple instruments. And you need to mix, master and record your tracks.

Musicians who want to record have three options:

1) Form a band. But then you have to find other people who excel at specific instruments, like the same music you like, and won’t challenge you on creative decisions.

2) Use virtual instruments. These bits of software are great, but they lack the harmonic and emotional depth, the musicality of a skilled musician plying their trade.

Creating an album requires so much more than playing instruments. Mixing, mastering, and recording are all important (and expensive) ingredients in the soup.

3) Use micro-tasking marketplaces. Most of the time, this isn’t a great solution either. Choosing the right session musician on Fiverr is a total crapshoot. And people often charge way above their experience level.

Artists can spend years working with and learning recording software and still make music that’s not even close to radio ready. In an industry with thousands of aspiring artists and only a few that ever reach success, that’s a huge disadvantage.

For too long, making professional-sounding songs has required a ton of time and cash.

That’s exactly what  Musiversal  is trying to change.

What is Musiversal?

 Musiversal  is an early stage startup tearing down the barriers it takes to make a professional song.

Their goal is to make it easy as pie to turn your “dream song” into a reality.

They’ve created the Musiversal Studio: the world’s first fully-remote recording studio, filled with 35+ professional musicians to help artists find talented collaborators.

What does this mean?

It means artists don’t have to scramble around marketplaces trying to find the perfect guitarist or drummer or producer. Musiversal lets you pick from their curated roster, and you can have a virtual session where you get to collaborate in real-time.

You can tell the artist exactly what you need from them. Ten second flute solo? Easy. Entire drum track? Sure. Somebody to master the song with you? Musiversal has it covered.

How does Musiversal work?

Musiversal accounts purchase credits, which give you one session with any musician on their roster.

Each sessions is one hour long, and include a 30-minute live stream of the musician recording your ideas from their professional studio.

The live stream is a huge advantage. You get complete creative control over how everything sounds. Don’t like how they’re accentuating a certain note? Get it fixed on the spot.

This is not something you always get with other marketplaces! It speeds up the process and removes the need for revisions.

This video gives a good sense of how the real-time collaboration works:

After the session ends, customers usually get their finished audio files within 15 minutes to an hour. (Do this with a normal recording studio and it can take weeks.)

Who is on Musiversal’s roster?

Choosing a musician

Musiversal only accepts the top 1% of applicants. They have a rigorous selection criteria for their session musicians. Every single musician Musiversal hires needs to have professional experience. Artists must submit their portfolios, participate in a couple of “mock” sessions and pass a final interview.

  •  Cellist Ben Trigg  has worked on over 100 studio albums and TV shows – he’s worked with Elton John, The Killers and did cello for the film Atonement.
  •  James Graham  is a pianist that’s headlined the Montreal Jazz Festival and has a grammy-nominated credit with rapper Jay Z.
  •  Isaku Kageyama , who plays all sorts of traditional Japanese percussion instruments and has featured on the Ghost Tsushima soundtrack.

The roster is full of pros. Drummer Adam Alesi has an impressive group of credits including work on Mad Men and with Rihanna.

Browse the full roster of musicians on the  Musiversal website .

Pricing

Paying for recording studio time is a massive problem with the industry.

Musiversal’s session musicians are essentially freelancers, so they’re only paid when they get work. This “pay-per-gig” structure means competitors like SoundBetter are nearly 5-10x more expensive than Musiversal.

Interestingly, Musiversal pays all of their musicians a monthly salary. Whether they get booked by thirty customers, or zero, they still get a stable income. Pretty cool! And they manages supply and demand to ensure that musicians remain busy over 80% of the time.

All of this allows the team to offer a rate of just $30 – $60 per session. This is way cheaper than their competitors.

Musiversal combines the quality of a professional session musician with the low price you’d expect on a freelance marketplace.

Even the popular musicians on Fiverr tend to charge  $50 and up . And this marketplace is known for being cheap! (in price and quality).

The team

Musiversal is littered with self-described “musical nerds.”

The team is headed by CEO  Andre Miranda , whose been building the company since 2018.

Andre is who we’ve been working with on this report. He’s built the business to a team of 50+ that rakes in $1m+ in annual revenue.

Fun fact: Andre is a massive K-Pop enthusiast.

Andre’s industry experience is impressive. He’s. recorded 30,000 minutes in the studio, and crowdfunded one of the most  successful musical kickstarter projects of all time . (For $99, musicians could submit any audio file and Andre’s orchestra would integrate it into one of their scores.  Check out the results !)

Andre Miranda is supported by Co-Founder and COO Xavier Jameson.

Xavier’s got serious experience with startups. He successfully brought B2C marketplace Tutorean to life in 2018 as CEO & Venture Lead at  Intersection Ventures , before his love of music brought him to Musiversal in 2020. He’s a classically trained pianist and composer that’s raised $3m+ in VC funding over his journey.

What’s next for Musiversal?

Musiversal has some pretty big goals for the next few years.

Spotify estimates that there will be 50 million music creators with songs on the platform by the end of the decade.

That’s a big market to disrupt, especially when you consider most mid-tier artists spend $1,000+ releasing and promoting their single.

Recording studios are out of the equation for most artists at this level. That leaves online collaboration – which has grown substantially in the wake of covid.

Musiversal’s performance since 2020 is proof of this:

  • The team has tripled revenue
  • They’ve improved gross margins to over 40%
  • User retention rate is 97%

Over the next half-decade, they plan to reach 60k paying subscribers. This is a massive leap – but success would bring their company’s valuation to over $1b.

They have product-market fit. It’s time to scale.

They also plan to snowball this growth into a music licensing expansion. This would let creators both record and publish their songs, all from the same platform.

Musiversal’s ultimate goal is pretty simple – they want to be the #1 platform for producing music globally.

You can help them get there.

Investment opportunity

Musiversal is raising $75k via WeFunder.

They’ve actually already smashed this target ($580k raised from 280+ investors), but are still accepting investments until April 30.

Investment type

  • Investors are buying convertible notes. These convert into equity if Musiversal goes public or secures an exit.
  • The valuation sits at $15m. So by investing, you’re betting Musiversal will be worth more than this upon acquisition/going public.

Previous raises

Musiversal has successfully raised money a few times before:

  • They had a Priced Round in 2020 which bought in nearly $800k
  • The team had another Priced Round in 2021 which raised $1.4m
  • They are closing a third round in April this year, which raised $1.5m.

Much of this has come from high-profile VC funds (Shilling Capital, Lince Capital and LC Ventures).

Use of funds

  • 30% is going to growth. The main goal of the raise is expanding the customer base through marketing and sales
  • 25% of money raised will be put toward product development
  • 25% toward new musician/team hires.
  • The remaining 20% of funds will be used for fees and contingencies

Investment requirements

Both accredited and non-accredited investors can invest for a minimum of just $100.

How does Musiversal stack up?

Liquidity

So-so

Getting involved here means investing in an early stage company via a convertible note. It’s not an investment known for its liquidity. There’s no guarantee that Musiversal ever makes it to exit. At the very least, their five-year plan will mean you’re most likely waiting until 2027.

Returns potential

Very good

Musiversal has a long way to go to reach their goal of 60k paid subscribers (they currently have 400 paying customers). It might be a long shot, but if they hit, it will be music to investor’s ears.

There’s a lot of money in the music industry. It’s tough to get your foot in the door, but Musiversal have made a good start. Plus, online collaboration is really hitting its straps now. We agree – it’s going to play a big part in the future of music creation.

Competition

Lots of indirect competition

The music industry is super competitive. Musiversal is far from the only marketplace offering session musicians.

Nearly every freelancer platform has the same offering – Fiverr, Airtaskter, Upwork. This cannot be ignored.

But these are all indirect competitors. Musiversal is vertical-specific. They are much higher quality and more convenient than these competitors. They offer live collab, a curated roster of musicians and up to 5x cheaper than most alternatives.

Product quality

Fantastic

It’s good. There’s not really much else to say here. They’ve produced 20k songs, and have a 4.9/5 review rating. The musicians are talented and have professional studio set ups. Listen for yourself.

Traction

Getting good

300+% in annual growth is pretty impressive. They already have $1m+ in yearly revenue with just 400 subscribers.

A track on the platform even won a Latin-GRAMMY Award. And others have been featured in Netflix and Disney shows.

Closing thoughts

I’m pretty excited with what Musiversal is doing.

There’s a clear gap in the music industry between the top 1% of artists and everyone else. Recording sessions are unaffordable, but freelancer marketplaces are hit and miss.

The artists on Musiversal’s roster are seriously impressive. They’re not just talented — they’re the ultimate professionals. The company is showing great signs of traction, and the online music collaboration niche is only going to get bigger in the next few years.

Hitting their goal of 60k subscribers by 2027 might be a tough ask, but it’s not impossible.

Musiversal has a shot at seriously disrupting the recording world. I really like these guys and am rooting for an exit someday.

As a musician, that would be music to my ears.

Musiversal’s fundraising round closes April 30

Disclosures

  • We have no Musiversal shares in the ALTS 1 Fund.
  • I am considering investing in Musiversal’s fundraising on Wefunder.

This issue has been a sponsored deep-dive, meaning Alts has been paid to write an independent analysis of Musiversal. Musiversal has agreed to offer an unconstrained look at their business & operations. Musiversal is a sponsor of Alts, but our research is neutral and unbiased. This should not be considered investment advice, but rather an independent analysis to help readers make their own investment decisions. All opinions expressed here are ours, and ours alone. We hope you find it informative and fair.

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Author

Stefan von Imhof

Stefan von Imhof

Stefan von Imhof is the co-founder and CEO of Alts.co.  With a background in alternative asset analysis, valuations, and due diligence, Stefan was born for this world. His alternative investing  newsletter has grown into Alts.co — the world's largest alt investing community, with over 120,000 investors. Originally from Boston and later Santa Barbara, CA, he now lives in Melbourne, Australia with his beautiful wife.

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