The latest buzz in technology, stocks, and investments is centered around cryptocurrency, bitcoin, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and other digital markets. Although the virtual sphere is still pretty new to most industries, the music industry is entering the conversation on a more consistent basis.
Ryan Larry and Delence Sheares Sr. have entered the market and understand the future of virtual space. The duo launched VerseBooks, which is the music industry’s first social marketplace and community for licensing music compositions, including lyrics, hooks, audio vocals, and master recordings.
BLACK ENTERPRISE connected with Sheares, the lead developer of VerseBooks, to discuss what the company is about and how they will make an impact in the music industry.
With all the talk about cryptocurrency, blockchain, and bitcoin, you’ve launched VerseBooks that deals with music licensing on another level. Could you explain the basis for your company and how it works and how will it change the game?
VerseBooks is the next logical progression for the music industry. We have developed an expansive blockchain-based ecosystem with VerseBooks that helps level the playing field chiefly for songwriters, artists, and producers actively seeking to carve out their space in the ever-changing music landscape and industry. It’s all about redefining the music creative process by focusing on the core aspects of creating a musical composition; the lyrics. Lyrics are the raw commodity of the music industry. Our company has created a blockchain-based system/app that enables the musician to write their lyrics or musical composition in a virtual VerseBook using a mobile device or web-connected computer/laptop. Once the music composition is written in their VerseBook, the composition is then registered on the blockchain as a smart contract, timestamped, and accessible to be licensed on an exclusive or non-exclusive basis if desired to other users in the VerseBooks community. This process creates tremendous value for the community in so many ways and furthermore demonstrates the paradigm shift of emerging mass adoption to blockchain-based systems.
As a music-based social community, how will VerseBooks help the music community and how do you anticipate making it appealing to them?
Artists are the driving force behind the music industry. Lyrics are the driving force behind artists. There are many parts of a song, VerseBooks brings them together and provides a set of tools to help build opportunities for various components of the music community. VerseBooks is helping the music community register, valuate, and manage their ownership, copyrights, and music catalogs using our blockchain technology platform. Music catalogs have become bankable assets as a leverageable asset class on Wall Street which has been proven with recent deals such as the iconic $300M+ Scooter Braun deal monetizing Taylor Swift’s catalog through its sale to private equity firm Shamrock Holdings. Wall Street and the financial industry base value on valuations such as appraisals, bond face values, fund balance sheets, etc. There are methods such as the VC method, DCF method, checklist method, scorecard method, qualitative traits summary, financial projections, forecast summary, and more to value a company.
How has your industry background prepared you for starting this type of company? What type of experience have you had in order to know that something like this will work and can be appealing?
Growing up in Ohio both Ryan (Columbus, OH) and I (Toledo, OH) have experienced our fair share of ups and downs which have taught us many wise lessons from the heartbeat of America. Ryan Larry is the brainchild behind the VerseBooks platform stemming from his long history of success in the music industry from running his own label to breaking and developing talents such as Trippie Redd or Saint Lamar, and licensing verses to various A&R, artists, and producers. My family has been in technology for over 50 years. I graduated from MIT’s Sloan School of Business Blockchain Program.
As an entrepreneur trying to help other business owners and/or creatives, what advice would you give to those who have an innovative idea that needs to be incorporated into the industry?
Don’t be afraid to be different. Develop a roadmap and gather your resources. Dive in, dive in, dive in, dive in! Don’t be one of those creative procrastinators always seeking an excuse as to why you’re not executing and taking small steps essential to manifest your vision. Take time to plan and strategize. Create a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis so that you’re prepared for your expected and unexpected outcomes. Research your potential competitors and study your industry like the back of your hand. Create strategic relationships to foster keystone connections and remember your Rolodex/contacts that you have established over the years. Invest in yourself as much as you can to develop the beta product, platform, entity, etc. Learn the basics of business such as what type of entity structure is best for your business model.
How do you see VerseBooks making a viable impact in this industry and what do you anticipate taking place once it’s become a staple in the music business?
VerseBooks will be the music platform that combines the power of Facebook, Amazon, Coinbase, Spotify, with a splash of Door Dash. Seriously a gumbo mix of technology directed toward a niche target market. We see VerseBooks as the savior of the music industry by connecting the core components essential to continual innovation while assisting the music creation process.
Investment opportunities at VerseBooks can be found here.