Songtradr, WiseTech founder lift stakes in The Brag Media's new owner Vinyl Group

Songtradr, WiseTech founder lift stakes in The Brag Media's new owner Vinyl Group

Vinyl Group CEO Josh Simons.

Shares in music and media company Vinyl Group (ASX: VNL) reached a four-year high this morning following yesterday's announcement that Aussie-founded US music tech giant Songtradr would be lifting its interest to almost 20 per cent, within a week of WiseTech (ASX: WTC) founder Richard White increasing his stake to 34 per cent.

These votes of confidence come from the conversion of convertible notes by two major backers of Vinyl, formerly listed as Jaxsta - a brand the group still owns with the world's largest database of music credits.

Other businesses within the group include Vampr, the leading online social-professional network for creators, music fan e-commerce store Vinyl.com, and leading Australian youth publisher and agency The Brag Media which was acquired at the end of January. 

The group reported 218 per cent quarter-to-quarter revenue growth in the three months to the end of March to $1.86 million - a 1,181 per cent improvement on the March quarter of 2023.

In a letter to shareholders to coincide with the quarterly results, Vinyl Group's CEO Josh Simons - the founder of Vampr - highlighted the immediate integration of The Brag Media into the wider company.

The publisher is known for such titles as  The Music Network, Tone Deaf, TheBrag.com, Variety Australia, and Rolling Stone Australia & New Zealand, with the latter already having a merch store launched on Vinyl.com, while Vinyl Group has also introduced cross-promotional display ads across its media mastheads.

"I'm pleased to highlight that Vinyl.com’s average order value has increased by 37 per cent QoQ, and Jaxsta’s B2B signups have surged by 90 per cent in the same period," Simons added.

These stats, despite net operational cash outflows of $1.26 million in the quarter, have been swiftly followed by investor consolidation by Richard White's RealWise Group Holdings as it converted an almost $7 million balance into stock, and Songtradr converting $1.6 million into shares.

Business-to-business music licensing marketplace Songtradr, founded by its Australian CEO Paul Wiltshire, reportedly raised $109 million in November to secure a valuation of $879 million.

"We’re very impressed with the strategic progress and discipline Josh and the team at Vinyl Group have shown over the last year," Wiltshire said yesterday.

"Songtradr intends to remain a long term shareholder and we are very confident about the path ahead for Vinyl Group."

His comments echo those from Richard White last week.

"I remain enthusiastic about Vinyl. The conversion into equity of the note held by RealWise Group Holdings P/L, is in the best interest of Vinyl and shows my confidence in Vinyl’s business, its continued growth and in Josh and his leadership team," White said.

VNL shares opened at 15 cents per share (cps) this morning, representing levels not seen since December 2019, and at the time of publication are up 16.67 per cent today at 14cps, implying a market capitalisation of $106.6 million.

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