Dmitry Konnov: «In 2022, music written at home on a laptop costs money»


Creative business is developing not only new technologies, but also ways to attract investment.

дмитрий кононов - музыка в ноутбуке

Musicians, especially beginners, do not always understand what kind of resource they have. Their tracks are the results of intellectual activity — intangible assets that can bring real profit. Creators often devalue their creativity, instead of treating it as a business project. At the same time, the Higher School of Economics conducted a study according to which 113,000 creative entrepreneurs work in Moscow alone, who earn about 4 trillion rubles a year, and their share in the city's GRP is 6.29%. This is 1.6 times more than the share of the construction industry, which is one of the main drivers of economic development. Conclusions can be made independently.

How to make intellectual property rights work? Dmitry Konnov, Managing partner of the largest music conglomerate ZVONKO group, Yana Ponomarenko, marketing director of the crowdlending platform Co-Fi for investment in creative industries, and singer-songwriter Alexey Ismailov, known under the pseudonym Dante, told about this at the lecture "How to promote music projects: Secrets of successful management", held at the RMA business school.

"To start promoting the project, you need a manager, at least 100 subscribers in social networks and financial investments that will then start working for you," Dmitry Konnov is sure. — I myself have been the CEO of Universal Music in Russia for a long time and I know the scheme of cooperation of various labels with artists. This is about 60 to 40%: the musician gets most of it, but there is a risk of losing the rights to his songs, especially if he inattentively reads the contract. Recall at least the history of the once popular band “Propaganda”, the soloist and songwriter of which now has no right to perform them. Today there is an alternative to "surrender" to the label: to use a new way of finding finance — crowdlanding."

So far, the Co-Fi online platform is the only one in Russia that is engaged in attracting investments specifically in creative industries. Any individual can invest a project on it, but in order to get money for its implementation, the creator must have the status of a legal entity. "Registration of an individual entrepreneur is, in principle, very important if you want to do business, not amateur activity. Without this, no serious player in the music industry will communicate with you," says Konnov.

If an individual entrepreneur or LLC is registered, with the help of crowdlanding, you can attract up to 10 million rubles at an average interest rate of 15 to 25% per annum. The creator fills out a detailed application on the website, it passes moderation and appears on the showcase of projects. There it is studied by potential investors who can put likes. When an artist sees that interest in him increases, he opens a funding round, which can last 2, 7 or 30 days. If the round is completed successfully, contracts with investors appear in the personal account, which are signed online, and the creator receives money. Then he either gives the amount with interest in equal monthly payments, or in full after the deadline. Plus, the author chooses the percentage that he is willing to pay, the amount and the period of attracting investments.

"The application is your "face", pitch deck or self—presentation," says Yana Ponomarenko. — It should be detailed, thoughtful, include a step-by-step business plan and competent positioning. Recently, a course on venture investments was held in Skolkovo. At one of the classes, the authors of the projects were given a task: to present them in such a way as to interest investors in three minutes. There is a false belief that they are attracted only by real estate and other tangible assets, but this is not the case. Today, many people who are seriously engaged in investments want to diversify their portfolio with creative projects."

"I already have two successfully implemented projects on Ko-Fi. I came to the platform with the first track after one label said that it was a bad song, not suitable for the Russian market. As a result, she scored 10 million streams, and the total monetization amounted to more than 25,000 euros. And it all started with 300,000 rubles of investments attracted through the platform," Dante said.

One of the rules of the crowdlanding platform is the need to leave a deposit if the artist needs more than 300,000 rubles. It is an intellectual property that already generates income, for example, a song from a back catalog, a clip or an album. "If The Beatles and The Rolling Stones needed a studio and equipment to record songs, then today, in 2022, music written at home on a laptop already costs money. Use it. In exchange for the results of your creative activity, you can get a real amount and invest it in your further promotion," Dmitry Konnov summed up.