EC-1

Kobalt’s edge in changing the music industry

Kobalt Music Group is driving the music industry to provide more transparency and faster royalty payments to musicians and challenging the traditional record labels and publishers with its own alterna

How Kobalt is betting on music’s middle class and DIY stars

Streaming services have made music ubiquitous, driving more exploration by consumers who don’t have to pay for each song or album individually. Musicians are correspondingly able to find their own n

How Kobalt is simplifying the killer complexities of the music industry

Backed by over $200 million in VC funding, Kobalt is changing the way the music industry does business and putting more money into musicians’ pockets in the process. In Part I of this series, I walk

How a Swedish saxophonist built Kobalt, the world’s next music unicorn

You may not have heard of Kobalt before, but you probably engage with the music it oversees every day, if not almost every hour. Combining a technology platform to better track ownership rights and ro

3 lessons from Roblox’s growth to gaming dominance

Our recently published EC-1 on Roblox recounts the origin story and growth prospects of the company. But there’s one more piece to the story: what Roblox’s impact will be on gaming and the broader

Digging into the Roblox growth strategy

Could Roblox create a new entertainment and communication category, something it calls “human co-experience”? When it was a small startup, few observers would have believed in that future. But aft

How Roblox avoided the gaming graveyard and grew into a $2.5B company

There are successful companies that grow fast and garner tons of press. Then there’s Roblox, a company which took at least a decade to hit its stride and has, relative to its current level of succes

Nine lessons on how Niantic reached a $4B valuation

We’ve captured much of Niantic’s ongoing story in the first three parts of our EC-1, from its beginnings as an “entrepreneurial lab” within Google, to its spin-out as an indepe

Harry Potter, the Platform, and the Future of Niantic

What is Niantic? If they recognize the name, most people would rightly tell you it’s a company that makes mobile games, like Pokémon GO, or Ingress, or Harry Potter: Wizards Unite. But no one a

The definitive Niantic reading guide

In just a few years, Niantic has evolved from internal side project into an independent industry trailblazer. Having reached tremendous scale in such a short period of time, Niantic acts as a poignant

An Equity deep dive on Patreon

The popular TechCrunch podcast Equity this week launched a new series called Equity Dive, wherein a host interviews the writer of the latest edition of the Extra Crunch EC-1. If you’ve ever want

Pokémon GO and the April Fools’ joke that made billions

It’s the morning of March 31st, 2014, and the Google Maps team is about to release its April Fools’ Day gag to the world. It wasn’t the first time this team had goofed around with an

How a Google side project evolved into a $4B company

How did Niantic happen? How did the company behind Pokémon GO and (soon) Harry Potter: Wizards Unite come to be? When anyone talks about Niantic, they generally mention that it’s “a Googl

The Niantic EC-1

Few software companies have transformed the way we think about moving through physical space like Niantic. The creators of Pokémon GO and soon Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, Niantic has become an incre

Patreon’s future and potential exits

Through the Extra Crunch EC-1 on Patreon, I dove into Patreon’s founding story, product roadmap, business model and metrics, underlying thesis, and competitive threats. The six-year-old company last

The Patreon EC-1

TechCrunch is launching a new format for Extra Crunch members, called the EC-1. Modeled after the Form S-1 filing that late-stage startups submit to the SEC as part of the IPO process, EC-1s are autho

The founding story of Patreon

It’s May 7, 2013 and Jack Conte is, in his own words, “totally exhausted, slash, totally wired, in that really weird in-between zone.” He has spent 18 hours per day for the last 50 days building

The product of Patreon

Patreon is aggressively pursuing a new three-year product vision that is, in the words of SVP of Product Wyatt Jenkins, to build “the world’s best membership SaaS product for creators.” With abo

The business of Patreon

Patreon provides business infrastructure to independent content creators: people making videos, music, podcasts, paintings, comics, games, magazines and other forms of media for fans online. It helps

The thesis of Patreon

Can Patreon become a powerful, multi-billion-dollar company at the heart of the global media and entertainment industry? It’s founders and investors certainly believe so. In this Extra Crunch EC-1,
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