VNUE, Inc. announced that the company has begun deployment of its innovative Soundstr music recognition platform to radio stations and other businesses, and an industry veteran chimed in on the importance of this development and the positive impact it will have in radio.
John Madison, who is best known in radio circles for overseeing clusters in NYC, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Phoenix for Pyramid Broadcasting, said, “Soundstr is a groundbreaking technology that brings affordable, detailed data to radio, including analytics that have not been available previously.
“Importantly, this lowers the threshold so that smaller stations – of which there are tens of thousands – can finally afford to have this valuable data. These detailed analytics may then be used to negotiate lower licensing costs, and importantly, ensure that the right songwriters and artists are actually being paid.
“Royalties paid to the PROs are one of the largest expenses that a given radio station has, for example, one radio group had annual payments of $300mm alone. The detailed data that Soundstr will provide will help reduce these costs anywhere from five to 25%,” Madison added.
According to Statista.com, radio advertising revenue in 2016 amounted to almost $18 billion. It is estimated that radio pays anywhere from four to 10% of their revenue to the PROs – Performing Rights Organizations which are responsible for collecting royalties and paying their songwriter and artist members – to have the privilege of playing music. This means that up to $1.7 billion is collected, a cost which radio stations have long grumbled about because of the lack of control.
This means that Soundstr has the potential to reduce costs by as much as $425 million industry-wide, while at the same time, leveraging the data to ensure that the publishers and songwriters are paid for their actual plays.
It has been estimated that PROs use as much as 30% or more of royalties for operational expenses; Soundstr has the capability of helping to reduce this, resulting in a net increase to the stakeholders.
Zach Bair, CEO of VNUE, said “We are initially deploying Soundstr to radio during the beta testing phase at no cost, and anticipate doing the same for the full rollout. This of course creates an easy path for adoption and makes the decision a no-brainer even for the smallest stations. And, as we begin to charge for the service, our cost will not be any type of a barrier.”