Djooky: How are the startups doing?
Tell us about your startup for those who hear about it for the first time
Djooky is an artist-focussed digital ecosystem that brings together the marketplace DjookyX and Djooky Music Awards, the world’s largest app-driven song contest enhanced by HitHunter functionality for music fans that encourages them to identify potential future hits. DjookyX as a part of this ecosystem is a music investment and trading platform, a marketplace where grassroots artists can sell intellectual property (IP) rights in their music to fans and investors.
What was the story of the startup? Where did this idea come from?
Djooky’s story began from the realization by a group of global music industry’s veterans that the existing structure of the global music talent market, currently dominated by major labels, is inherently monopolistic and thus unequal. While generating exorbitant profits for the labels, the inefficient music market leads to high costs for artists, meaning that the vast majority of truly talented musicians worldwide have zero to very little chance of reaching their audiences because they are struggling to get financing for the production, release, and promotion of their songs.
That’s why everything Djooky does is firmly rooted in the belief that the global music industry must be democratized to the benefit of a more diverse and inclusive community of global music talent. Djooky’s core ambition is to empower up-and-coming grassroots artists by giving them a chance to be heard by the world by enabling them to find alternative ways of developing, funding, and promoting their talent.
Why did you choose such a name?
Djooky is a memorable word, easily spelled and pronounced in all corners of the world. It contains a recognizable in the music industry combination of letters ‘d’ and ‘j’. Within our team, we talk about Djooky as a newly discovered planet to which our spaceship is heading.
Last year you received a grant from the USF. What has changed since then? Tell us about the success of the team
We have developed and tested the marketplace DjookyX, launched the HitHunter feature for music lovers, and our user base has grown from 10,000 to 150,000 unique users. Also, we have been featured in the world’s most prestigious music media such as Music Business Worldwide, The Rolling Stone, The Billboard.
Are you planning to scale? What markets are you considering for expansion?
We are a global company and are looking to be present in all 193 member states of the United Nations.
Today, in a span of a year, our platform grew to become the world’s biggest song contest. By its fourth season of Spring 2021, well over 2,500 artists from 129 countries had nominated their songs for the DMA. And over 150, 000 music lovers from 176 countries had registered to support their favorite acts.
With winners from the US, Peru, Kazakhstan, and the Philippines, and runner ups from Nigeria, Chile, Germany, the Solomon Islands, and other countries, Djooky has become a truly inclusive artist-focused platform with technology allowing for the discovery of new grassroots musical talent wherever in the world it may be based.
Our core team now operates from Los Angeles, Berlin, London, and Kyiv, Ukraine, with an amplified global presence in New York, Sydney, Lagos, Cologne, São Paulo, and Bangkok via the platform’s PR partners. On top of that, Djooky has brand ambassadors in Iran, Tanzania and Namibia, The Philippines and the Solomon Islands who help us in building the brand’s presence and visibility in countries with identified high potential talent.
How are you finding working with the Fund?
We understand one another. It is a great partnership.
Tips for those who are just starting or dreaming of founding their own startup
If you have a great startup idea, find like-minded people and build your core team. Apply to eō Business Incubators and good luck!