MXP4's new Bopler Games, launched in beta Wednesday on Facebook, features music from EMI Music and EMI Publishing that's part of a global licensing agreement between the companies.
The deal marks the first time a Facebook app developer has signed an agreement with a label and publisher for this type of business model, CEO Albin Serviant tells Billboard.biz. And more are on the way, he says. "We expect more deals to be announced in the coming weeks and months before the commercial launch in September."
Here's how Bopler Games works: Bopler Games allows fans to play a variety of games incorporating music. Users can play for free using 60-second clips - up to three times a day - or scan unlock full-length tracks using Facebok Credits. A portion of money spent on the premium features goes to labels and publishers. After Facebook gets a 30% cut of Facebook Credits revenue - its standard amount - MXP4 and rights holders share the net revenue, says Serviant.
Go to Bopler Games right now and you will see featured tracks such as "The World is Mine" by David Guetta, "Karma Chameleon" by Culture Club, "The Fear" by Lily Allen and "Rio" by Duran Duran.
MXP4 sees the popularity of music on Facebook and artist's use of the platform as indications that music fans are being underserved on the platform. "We strongly believe that social music gaming on Facebook is an untapped category. We want to be the leader."
Before getting into social gaming, MXP4 was a B2B-focused technology company that worked with labels and publishers. Serviant says the transition to a B2C model began with a Facebook game called "David Guetta Pump It!" that attracted 1.3 million monthly active monthly users and resulted in such encouraging metrics the company decided to move into social gaming.