Music Business

Napster preps launch of new platform combining Napster, MelodyVR

London-based Napster Group is preparing to debut a new Napster-branded platform which will be a merger of the two currently still standalone businesses MelodyVR and streaming platform Napster.

Guest post by Emmanuel Legrand of the Legrand Network

Napster Group, the London-based company that was set up in December 2020 following the completion of the merger of virtual reality specialist MelodyVR and music streaming platform Napster, is preparing for the launch of a new Napster-branded platform combining the two businesses, which for the moment continue to exist as stand-alone operations.

  No date has been announced by the company for the launch of the new platform, other than “later this year,” according to a recent “operational update” filed with the London Stock Exchange. The new service will be available across multiple connected devices such as smartphone, tablet, smart TV, desktop, console, native VR, home audio and in-car and will offer streaming, video content and immersive VR experiences. 

  At launch, MelodyVR customers will be “encouraged” to migrate to the updated Napster platform. “Using proven customer acquisition and marketing strategies to build our subscriber base, we have clear ambitions to significantly increase subscriber and user numbers, driving revenues and in turn accelerate our progress  towards becoming cash flow positive,” said the company.

Significant savings

  Napster Group also revealed that it now counts more than 5 million users worldwide to its subscription-based model, including subscribers from PaaS services powered by Napster. Proforma revenues from the Napster streaming service and Melody VR service combined reached $96 million in 2020 and during January 2021, the company generated monthly revenues of about $8m.

  “Since acquisition, the Company has now largely completed the integration of the MelodyVR and Napster businesses, which has led to greater efficiencies and significant opex savings across the group,” said the group. “Our in-house team of leading strategists and engineers is currently developing a new music platform which is intended to be launched as an update to the existing Napster offering later this year.”

  It continued: “The new platform will not just combine Napster’s music streaming capability with Melody VR’s capabilities in streaming live music, but it will also offer access to a library of content including documentaries, short form episodic content and music feature films, as well as exclusive recorded performances, own brand physical events and digitally ticketed live events.”

A transformative acquisition

  Anthony Matchett, Napster Group CEO, commented: “We recognise that this has been a difficult period for shareholders, but we are incredibly pleased with our recent developments and believe that the acquisition of the Napster brand is transformative for our business. We intend to relaunch the Napster product later this year and to-date the reception to our plans has been overwhelmingly positive. Our growth plans are ambitious, but operationally realistic, and we are excited about the growth potential and value that we can create for the music industry and for our shareholders in the coming years.”

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