Reporting from the second day of MoneyTalks, being held here in Otaniemi, Espoo, Finland I bumbed into a new innovative music startup called Hitlantis. I talked to one of the co-founders Timo Poijärvi about the concept and what they are doing. Poijärvi has worked in the music industry and with some startups before, but has a strong experience from the ways the music industry works. This showed up in our talks and he openly questioned the need of Teosto (Finnish Composers’ Copyright Society) and record labels for musicians. The future is about the community around the artists.
The company is still in very early stages and they have their website stating that they will announce their service in a few days. I managed to have a peak at the software and see what it does.
The service works in such a manner that consumers are able to listen to the music for free and find new artists through a new user interface shown above. The idea of the user interface came from the game Trivial Pursuit. As many know, the object of the game is to answer questions correctly and aim for the center. This is exactly the way Hitlantis works as well. Artists establish their band in the service and with the help of their community aim to move towards Hitlantis in the center.
Even though the service is in early stages, the user interface did interest me and felt relatively natural in the way to find new artists. The way the artists move towards the center is with different activities regarding the band, including certain social functions as well as music purchases. Timo Poijärvi actually mentioned that he wanted to create a different kind of music service with the consumers and not a traditional MySpace kind which is heavily commercialised and biased in the way it promotes music. Biased in the manner that top lists can be purchased, etc – user actions do not have effect which artists are promoted.
Torsti Tenhinen from hasan venture concept talked in one of the keynotes that they have also invested their time and knowledge into the company through marketing activities. He disclosed that while the company focuses in on music, there are a lot of other industries the concept can be taken to.
For those wondering about the origin of the name, it actually has been invented by Ville Valo, the lead singer and character of the famous Finnish love metal band HIM. Timo Poijärvi wanted to get him onboard, but Ville Valo’s deal with the record labels prohibit him from getting into ventures such as Hitlantis.