Sofar Sounds has acquired Seated, which will bring new artist services to the Sofar platform.
Seated will continue to operate as an independent platform, but it will partner with Sofar to offer artists more ways to connect with their fans. That starts with bringing some of Seated’s tools to the Sofar artist dashboard. Sofar says the two companies are also building something special – with more details coming “in the next few months.”
Seated is a ticketing services platform with direct-to-fan presale and VIP ticketing. It has helped artists like John Legend, Death Cab for Cutie, and Dillon Francis arrange their private gigs for customers. During the pandemic, the company pivoted to help power live-streams for artists like Nathaniel Rateliff, Andrew Bird, and Joan Baez. The platform just launched Shopify integration to help sell merch and increase artist revenue by 35%.
Sofar built a model of promoting small concerts in non-traditional venues for its community. Its services have spread to more than 400 cities across the globe, despite the pandemic. Sofar and Seated combined may help take independent artists to new heights. That’s despite the fact that ‘couch concerts’ are currently on hold in the United States.
270 artists in the global community have been showcased on Sofar’s listening room. On average, artists have made ~$450 per performance. Sofar also introduced three payment levels for artists playing in ticketed cities in the US, UK, and Canada. That payment scheme aims for an average net profit split of 70/30 in favor of the artist for Discovery format shows.
Sofar Sounds Global Artist Fund has also been helping independent artists stay afloat.
A survey of Sofar artists found that 71% had lost more than half of their income due to the pandemic. Only 4% of surveyed artists had received advances for their canceled dates. The Global Artist Fund, in partnership with non-profit Passim, has paid out grants to hundreds of artists who rely on local gigs to make their living.
“In total, Sofar and Seated paid a combined $3 million to artists globally in 2020, and we hope that we’ve been helpful in some small way. It’s been a hard year, but each artist in our community and the music they create has kept us going,” says a representative. “As we start to see cities like Perth, Wellington, and Beijing begin to hold safe concerts around the world, we can start to see a future that brings us all back together again.”