This is the first prototype, so it's largely based on samples. While there aren't any neural networks used for raw audio synthesis, the team is planning to expand the features of this product and add some NN to scale. The text-to-music generation has also attracted a lot of attention, especially from investors and industry specialists. "It brought us more audience, we doubled our revenue, [and] we got five times more users in two months," Zgordan says, demonstrating how the startup is growing its user base. The product is also very simple to use: in order to get a soundtrack, all you need to do is type in a prompt and it almost instantly pumps out music.
The CEO shares that while Mubert has been in the generative content space for five years, the team has started getting a lot of attention from the industry and seeing validation of its ideas only now. Moreover, the startup is well-positioned because it works with artists and musicians, paying them for the sounds they submit. "It's a very ethical way to get data," he adds. "[Musicians also] know how we use their sounds." A lot of the time, artists aren't credited for the way their art is fed into neural network training; they aren't asked for permission. To further support musicians, Mubert is developing a revenue-sharing system that will allow a wider range of artists to get a new revenue stream with AI-curated content. For instance, if you created some music samples, you can upload them to the company's servers and get some money from its user subscriptions. "I think that is more future-proof than different methods of how developers get content for datasets," Paul concludes.
Another big turn for the startup was Alexey Kochetkov stepping down as CEO and Paul becoming the new one. As Alex was getting more involved with his second company – making digital art, NFTs, and other creative media – transferring his role to then-COO was a logical step. Being the founder, Kochetkov still takes an active part in the development of the company, serving as the strategic adviser. In this transition, Paul wanted to introduce changes in the operational activities and product development. A lot of those ideas were born during Wallifornia, which helped the startup understand its product-market fit.
If before Mubert had six main products (a mobile app for personalized listening experiences, Mubert Render for content creators, business.mubert.com for venues, and more) that were all targeted for different markets, Wallifornia made the team realize that its main product was the tech itself. Instead of fighting for users, it became evident that it's best to focus on one of the main products – Mubert API (the other being Mubert Render) – and offer it to those same competitors. The other product, Mubert Render, is also a primary focus for the team and, in some ways, acted as a demo of all the possibilities API could offer.