My Major Company mixes traditional record label A&R with crowdfunding

Described as a fan-funded record label, My Major Company has launched in the UK with a mix of traditional A&R and crowdfunding.

It differs slightly from similar sites, such as Sellaband or the UK’s Slicethepie, in that the acts featured on the site are sourced by the startup’s own talent spotting department first. In addition, fans who choose to invest are essentially buying shares in any future profits made from the artist’s launch campaign as a whole (physical and digital music sales, merchandise, tours etc.), which My Major Company oversees, should they raise the £100,000 stipulated to get off the ground.

The model has been imported from France where My Major Company has been running since 2008, launching a number of acts with not inconsiderable success, including Gregoire who has since gone on to sell one million copies of his debut album. Impressively, those who initially invested in him saw a return of almost 20 times their initial stake with €118,000 being paid to one investor alone, apparently.

The UK wing of My Major Company also sounds like it means business: it’s being headed up by music industry veteran Paul-Rene Albertini, ex-Chairman and CEO of Warner Music International, no less.

In terms of how fans invest, they can purchase between 1 and 100 shares in an act, starting at £10 per-share. Any money raised is held in a third-party account for as long as it takes to reach the artist’s target amount of £100,000, although investors can move their investments around at any time prior to this or withdraw their support.

Additionally, it’s not just about handing over cash. My Major Company has mechanisms in place to keep fans/investors in the loop as the launch campaign ramps up via a team of community managers who will relay information from the band regarding “marketing strategies to details of new producers and songs.” The idea is that the more fans and/or investors are allowed to participate, the greater chance of the act and their newfangled record label, My Major Company, achieving long term support.

So how is that working out in the UK so far? Running since late October, My Major Company UK says that Ivyrise, the first band to reach the £100k target, did so in 4 days. That’s not too shabby.