Nnamdi Okike, Managing Partner & Co-founder of 645 Ventures, Joining Mandolin’s Board
Mandolin, the tech-focused digital fan engagement company, has closed a $12M Series A funding round, co-led by 645 Ventures and Foundry Group, with returning investments from High Alpha and Marc Benioff’s TIME Ventures as well.
As the US reaches an inflection point, and live events return in full force, the investments serve as a major VC endorsement of music livestreaming as a permanent solution born out of the pandemic and reinforced by the industry’s (and fans’) willingness to embrace the change in engagement - and an endorsement of Mandolin as the player to capture this meaningful sector of the $30B+ live music industry.
Nnamdi Okike, Managing Partner and Co-founder at 645 Ventures, will also be joining Mandolin’s board. He said of the partnership:
“At 645 Ventures, we believe that exceptional companies are being built that enable consumers to experience new behaviors that were accelerated during COVID-19. One of these categories is content livestreaming, and one of these companies is Mandolin. Mandolin provides the best technology platform to enable livestreaming for artists, venues and fans, and they’re building a business to serve the needs of this fast-growing category. We’re excited to lead their Series A round.”
Mary Kay Huse, CEO of Mandolin, said:
“I’m thrilled to have Nnamdi join the Mandolin board. His extensive experience in helping early stage SaaS and consumer tech companies reach the next level will be invaluable as we look to supercharge our growth and make Mandolin Live+ a household name.”
Ryan McIntyre, partner at Foundry Group, said:
“Because of our investment in High Alpha, Foundry Group has been tracking Mandolin’s progress with interest since it was founded. We believe COVID-19 has accelerated the transition to a world where all in-person events are expected to be digitally simulcast. Mandolin’s livestreaming platform is best-in-class, and we’ve enjoyed attending (virtually) many of the concerts presented on Mandolin’s platform since 2020. We are excited to be part of the Mandolin journey going forward.”
Pollstar’s 2021 “Best Livestreaming Platform,” Mandolin will use the funding from this round to accelerate the expansion of its livestreaming and digital experiences, to continue to innovate as the data and software leader in the field, and to invest in go-to-market resources. Since its founding in 2020, Mandolin has wielded its exceptional technology background to host more than 1,500 shows and over 305K fans, partner with the likes of #iVoted (the largest virtual festival of 2020), Tibet House US, The Ryman Auditorium, and City Winery, and provide its artist/venue clients with lucrative data and analytics that they couldn’t get before livestreaming.
Mandolin recently announced its latest technology, Live+, a platform built as a “digital amplifier” for the hybrid live event future. Read more about Live+, which will be a specific focus of the funding from this Series A round, here at Variety:https://variety.com/2021/music/news/mandolin-platform-livestream-concerts-plus-1235003109/
Mandolin helps artists and venues create connections with fans and prosper through the music they produce. We intentionally push the boundaries of livestream, giving artists the right tools to create content, share it widely, and then better understand how fans engage. Mandolin gives artists the ability to build a digital strategy, all while giving fans unprecedented access to the artists they love. Mandolin Live+ digitally amplifies in-person shows; turning every live fan into a digital fan, opening up opportunities only available in the virtual realm, and helping artists deepen fan relationships through data. To learn more about how Mandolin is transforming the music industry through hybrid events, visit mandolin.com or Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.
About 645 Ventures:
645 Ventures (www.645ventures.com) invests in early-stage startups in SaaS, infrastructure software, and consumer technologies, partnering with founders to build growth-stage businesses that reach massive scale. 645 champions outbound value creation by combining operational expertise with an elite network that actively influences portfolio outcomes.
645 is backed by premier institutional LPs such as Princeton University, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and Spelman College, as well as influential business and technology leaders who serve on the boards of companies such as Google, Facebook, Airbnb, Walmart, and American Express.
About Foundry Group:
Foundry Group (www.foundrygroup.com), based in Boulder, CO, was established in 2007 and manages multiple funds representing over $2.5B in committed capital. Foundry invests in technology companies and venture capital funds throughout the United States and Canada.
About High Alpha:
High Alpha, based in Indianapolis, is a leading venture studio that conceives, launches, and scales next-generation B2B SaaS companies. The High Alpha portfolio includes leading cloud companies Attentive, SalesLoft, Zylo, Terminus, The Mom Project, Lessonly, LogicGate, Socio, Mandolin, and more. For more information visit highalpha.com or follow on Twitter @highalpha.