Artist- and employee-owned fan-monetization platform Ampled has revealed that it will shut down “by the end of 2023,” citing “a combination of challenges” encountered during the past two years.
The board of Ampled, which was per its LinkedIn page founded six years back, just recently announced plans to sunset the service. Billed as “a Patreon-like platform for musicians,” Ampled during its run attracted 3,925 total users and approved 336 artist pages, with 515 artist pages under construction, according to the entity’s breakdown of “current usage and financial metrics.”
This same source shows that monthly artist support, reflecting an average per-fan contribution of $6.78, has reached $5,542.27. Moreover, the transparency-minded platform’s “sliding scale choice” fee structure appears to have contributed to less-than-ideal financials for 2019 (the last year in which a profit-and-loss statement seems to have been released) and presumably beyond.
Elaborating upon the decision to cease operating Ampled, board members said they’d “exhausted all practical options” amid an effort to overcome “burnout and a lack of resources to hire full-time workers.” Ultimately, it was determined that they lacked “the resources or bandwidth to responsibly continue in a way that honors the Ampled values and community.”
Looking beyond the “setback,” the same board members said the shutdown shouldn’t “be misinterpreted as a sign that cooperative platforms can’t be successful.” Furthermore, the individuals intend “to share lessons” that could potentially serve as “a case study to help the future generations of collectively-owned web platforms scale and thrive.”
While a number of factors contributed to Ampled’s shuttering, it goes without saying that stiff competition from well-established operations including the aforementioned Moment owner Patreon didn’t help the situation.
Additionally, emerging players in the wider fan-monetization arena, Simon Cowell-backed on-demand-media startup Lounges.tv among them, have made noteworthy moves (and attracted new users) to this point in 2023. July, for instance, saw Passes buy Fanhouse, which counted as stakeholders The Chainsmokers.
Closer to the music space in particular, BTS agency Hybe’s self-described “global fandom life platform,” WeVerse, is continuing to generate revenue and supporter interest, earnings reports show. Though K-pop stars (including from rival companies) still account for the majority of WeVerse artist users, the Quality Control owner Hybe has quietly welcomed several non-K-pop acts to the service as well.
Plus, “creator community platform” Afterparty one month ago announced a $5 million raise. Also in September, DistroKid added a variety of direct-to-fan tools, including subscription and crowdfunding options, by acquiring Bandzoogle, whereas leading Jaxsta shareholder Songtradr purchased Bandcamp.