In this episode of The Label Machine podcast, host Nick Sadler sat down with Jeff Ponchick, co-founder and CEO of Mogul and former Head of Creator at Soundcloud, to explore how the platform is revolutionizing the way indie artists and labels manage and maximize their music revenues. 

Jeff Ponchick, co-founder and CEO of Mogul, was featured to discuss his impactful journey and contributions to the music industry. Jeff, a University of California graduate, revolutionized indie music monetization through founding Repost Network, which later merged with SoundCloud in a multimillion-dollar deal. His achievements earned him a spot on Forbes' prestigious 30 under 30 list and the title of Billboard Music Indie Power Player in 2022.

Mogul, Jeff's latest venture, aims to simplify the complex world of music royalties, consolidating upwards of 50 logins into a single platform. This innovation allows musicians and their teams to ensure they're receiving all due revenues, enabling them to concentrate on their primary passion: creating music. Jeff's entrepreneurial journey included a reflective gap year, where he recharged and contemplated his next moves, leading to the birth of Mogul. This platform stands out by offering a comprehensive view of an artist's or label's financial landscape across various rights types, identifying gaps in royalty collection, and providing actionable insights for resolution.

The podcast delves into the intricacies of setting up a publishing arm for artists, emphasizing the evolving landscape where even independent labels can benefit from such structures. Jeff highlights the shift towards direct fan engagement, facilitated by emerging technologies and platforms, suggesting that creators should actively manage and understand their business data to optimize growth and income.

Moreover, Jeff openly criticizes Spotify's controversial decision to implement a thousand-stream payment threshold, viewing it as detrimental to smaller artists and indicative of broader industry challenges that favor major labels at the expense of indie creators. He advocates for a more equitable distribution model that rewards all artists fairly for their contributions.

Jeff's insights extend to the potential of AI in music, envisioning a future where technological advancements democratize music creation and distribution further, fostering new forms of artistic expression and connection with audiences. His optimistic outlook on AI contrasts with concerns about its implications, focusing instead on the opportunities it presents for creative innovation.

Throughout the conversation, Jeff emphasizes the importance of education, business acumen, and embracing new technologies for artists and labels aiming to navigate the complex music industry successfully. His story and the establishment of Mogul reflect a deep commitment to empowering artists, ensuring they are fairly compensated, and advocating for a more transparent, accessible, and artist-centred music ecosystem.

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