Few venture capitalists are as attuned to investment opportunities in digital media and consumer services as Larry Marcus. An early investor in Pandora, RootMusic and SoundHound, Marcus has no time for on-demand streaming services, which typically require large, upfront advances to secure licensing deals from the major labels. "I tend to gravitate toward music services that directly touch the consumer and really add deep value to their experience, where direct licenses with labels are not necessary for them to exploit their primary business opportunity," Marcus told Billboard. And RootMusic founder/CEO J Sider says Marcus has been an invaluable source of advice. "From the very beginning, he helped me build the structure, and think through where we need to go, [and] where we're headed," Sider says. "He's a great product guy. He understands what the user wants. At the end of the day, that's how you build a great business."
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