Music apps developer Smule has raised $16.6m in a new funding round led by Roth Capital Partners, taking its total funding to a startling $42m. The company is behind apps including Magic Piano and Sing! Karaoke, and has been notably successful in attracting VC firms to its vision of social, global music-making apps. It’s a lot of money to have raised given the company’s size though: it has 18m monthly users of its apps, but says it is on course to make $30m in 2014 as a whole – 80% from subscriptions and 20% from ads. Smule’s website attracts 1.5m monthly unique visitors to watch performances uploaded by its users, and the company says it’s breaking even on monthly cashflow – so not quite profitable, but at least not losing lots of money like many apps firms. CEO Jeff Smith tells TechCrunch that the funding will be used for global expansion – Asia in particular – as well as launching new apps later in the year. $30m in 2014 would at least show strong growth: the company made $12.6m in 2012, and $21m in 2013, with a recent report by analytics firm App Annie claiming Magic Piano was the second most lucrative music app on iOS and Android in 2013, while Sing! Karaoke was the sixth(Bulletin, 31-Jan-14).

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