Artists taking stakes in digital music services isn’t a new trend. It was the very core of Jay-Z’s Tidal relaunch in 2015, most famously, but Justin Bieber and Diddy were among the minority shareholders in Spotify in its early years too. More recently, Katy Perry, Nas and Jason Derulo chipped in to a funding round for Audius, while Kylie Minogue and Robbie Williams are shareholders in Roxi.
Now the latest example is Latin star Maluma, who according to Bloomberg is one of the investors in music service Trebel’s latest funding round. This isn’t a streaming startup: it’s a music downloads service, and one that appears to have some traction. The round is expected to raise $25m for the company at a $200m valuation.
The report adds that Trebel now has 5.2 million monthly active users thanks to strong growth in Latin America, with plans to expand to Indonesia this year – aided by the fact that the lead investor in the round is media organisation MNC Group from that country.