Music licensing outfit Rumblefish has added a new board member to help drive its growth. Harry DeMott, a former board member at Pandora and long-time analyst and investor in media companies, has joined the Portland, Oregon-based company's board of directors.
DeMott tells Billboard.biz he joined Rumblefish because the company targets a particular need in music licensing. His time with Pandora showed him that music licensing is a very difficult task for which few people have the patience. But music licensing is even more difficult for consumers, Rumblefish's target market for licensed music in social media and user-generated content. "These guys seem to have done a pretty good job solving that problem," he says.
Rumblefish provides solutions for both consumers and professionals to add licensed music to their projects. Its Friendlymusic, for example, lets individuals add music to their user-generated YouTube videos for $1.99. Then there's Animoto, a web-based service that turns photos and videos into animated features. Rumbelfish's pre-cleared catalog of music provides the soundtrack to the images. In both cases, the consumer - not industry professionals - are making use of licensed music.
User-generated content is a huge potential market, and Rumblefish is off to a good start. In July it surpassed 4 million licensed songs in user-generated videos, slideshows and presentations.
DeMott has a keen understanding of media in a changing digital landscape. In addition to being an angel investor and a venture capital partner at Raptor Capital Management, DeMott has been an equity research analyst at Credit Suisse, King Street Capital and Knighthead Capital Management. He and funds he has been associated with have invested in Pandora, Titan Outdoor, dMarc Broadcasting (acquired by Google in 2006), Zing (acquired by Dell in 2007), Armada Media, Kyazoonga, Broadcast Interactive Media (BIM), Whistlebox and Violet Crown Cinema.