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This article was published on May 6, 2014

    Rhapsody makes its first outside investment as it backs theFuture.fm creator Dubset Media

    Rhapsody makes its first outside investment as it backs theFuture.fm creator Dubset Media
    Josh Ong
    Story by

    Josh Ong

    Josh Ong is the US Editor at The Next Web. He previously worked as TNW's China Editor and LA Reporter. Follow him on Twitter or email him a Josh Ong is the US Editor at The Next Web. He previously worked as TNW's China Editor and LA Reporter. Follow him on Twitter or email him at [email protected].

    Rhapsody International, the parent company of music services Rhapsody and Napster, today that it is leading the Series B round for Dubset Media, a company focused on technology and distribution solutions for the electronic dance music (EDM) industry. The funding is the first outside investment that Rhapsody has ever made.

    Dubset Media has three pillars to its business: theFuture.fm, MixSCAN and MixBANK. Through those three products, Dubset works with DJs to catalog their work (MixBANK), track the necessary royalty licenses for tracks they use (MixSCAN), and then distribute them to listeners (theFuture.fm)

    Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Rhapsody hasn’t taken a controlling interest in the comapny. Dubset CEO Bob Barbiere told The Next Web that Rhapsody brings “a real amazing distribution network” that will synergize with his company’s technology and content acquisition services.

    TheFuture.fm is designed to serve as a neutral platform for DJs that can legitimize their mixes and then partner with music services for monetized distribution. As such, the Rhapsody investment could make things awkward for companies like Rdio and Spotify that may have been considering an integration with theFuture.fm. Barbiere noted that Dubset is still continuing down a platform-agnostic path and remains in talks with music services that compete with Rhapsody and Napster.

    Data has become an extremely valuable piece of the music streaming industry, as evidenced by Spotify’s recent acquisition of The Echo Nest. When I asked Barbiere if Dubset is open to an acquisition, he replied:

    We’re proceeding down a path where we serve [really great exclusive] to music services globally that want to deploy it. Should we be pursued by any company in particular in the industry, we’d take a look at it at that point.

    With Rhapsody on board as an investor, we can expect to see some interesting implementations of theFuture.fm on the Rhapsody and Napster services. Now we just have to see if the deal will scare away Rhapsody’s competitors from working with Dubset.

    Image credit: Antoniya G. Kozhuharova / Shutterstock