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Exclusive: Exploration Obtains $5 Million Funding, Will Begin Paying Digital Royalty Advances

Exploration.io, a digital rights management and software company that specializes in YouTube and SoundCloud, has secured $5 million to advance and purchase digital royalties.

The infusion of cash — a huge amount for digital rights management standards — will allow the Santa Monica, Calif.-based company to actually give advances to its clients, much like a record label or music publisher.

Exploration.io’s Aaron Davis on Maximizing YouTube and SoundCloud (Q&A)

Exploration will then ostensibly find and collect those royalties using its services and proprietary software.

Company executives say this makes Exploration the first digital rights company to offer such advances.

“While the structure of the advance is quite similar to advances and royalty purchases any in the entertainment industry are familiar with, this is the first time a company has sought to service creators specifically in the digital realm,” said Rene Merideth, the company’s COO.

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Exploration was originally founded as a software company to help companies — including labels and publishers — manage their content on YouTube. But it soon added a rights management component, and now also offers management of SoundCloud as well. 

Getting the $5 million in funding will allow Exploration to work with more rights holders, says CEO Aaron Davis, adding, “This funding allows us to help many more people than we ever could have alone.”

Davis would not disclose the source of Exploration’s funding.