Sharing on YouTube is one way for musicians to connect with others, but it can still be a bit lonely, without any interaction. Austrian-founded Sofasession aims to provide a platform for removing the loneliness from making music by letting users connect and “jam” with others online. The service has not been open to the public long, having launched back in June, but CEO Helmut Herglotz tells me that they have already attracted a ‘decent’ number of users.
Sofasession hosts their own bi-weekly jam sessions for musicians at any level or playing any genre, but users of the service are also able to create their own. The service allows users to create profiles (Herglotz’s is used as an example) and then find others to play with them. The platform is based a on freemium model. The basic service, including the community access and jamming features, is free, but users can pay to record their sessions. Herglotz tells me that this particular feature is due to be unveiled in 2015.
Herglotz, who founded the business (although he has since picked up an unnamed co-founder), tells me that he created the service as a result of boredom in the corporate world. He was doing well for himself, working as the CFO of a publicly-owned company, which he says was a well-paying position, but he craved something more and decided to become self-employed. Starting your own company is not necessarily wildly profitable (at first and possibly not ever), so Herglotz started a consulting company, which he continues to run, and then decided to move to this project.
Herglotz has opted to fund the project through a variety of sources. He has injected some of his own money, but also opted for external backing in the form of subsidies in Austria from the Austria Wirtschaftsservice and the INiTS incubation program. Additionally, the startup has just concluded an agreement with an as-yet-unnamed angel for 150K Euro.