In 2015, Sanket Gomase, an amateur filmmaker was scouting for a music director who’d be willing to collaborate with him on a documentary project. It was during this time that he re-connected with a classmate, Vivart Rangari and with the available limited resources (a microphone and computer), the duo produced a background score they were proud of. The fact that the film went on to bag an award at a national-level film festival only further added to their enthusiasm. And having tasted success in their initial attempt at music production, they teamed up with another engineering college pal, Nikhil Lodhi to start CoCreato.
“There is abundant local talent looking for the right kind of platform to create their own music, and that’s what we provide,” says Gomase. The trio explains how their enterprise will serve two purposes — music creation being a collaborative exercise would mean that there’s a singer, who might be on the lookout for a musician or vice-versa. Second, Nagpur being a small city meant that there’s a lot of hidden talent that may not have access to a network of professionals or professional studios. It already has released 70 tracks – 10 original and the remaining covers since it started operations in August 2017.
The start-up has managed to sign on 300 artists in just their maiden city, a community they fondly call the CoCreato Tribe. Currently operating on a WhatsApp group, the founders are in the process of launching an app and website by the end of April. As for its physical presence, CoCreato has rented an 1,800 sq ft plot for Rs.30,000 a month upon which stands its performance hall that can accommodate 100 people, a jamming room and a compact recording studio that cost Rs.20 lakh to build.
An artist can subscribe for a monthly package of Rs.2,000 to use the recording studio, or an hourly fee of Rs.700. Additionally, access to the other arenas will cost you Rs.400 per hour. It also assists professionals with releasing their work on music streaming platforms such as iTunes, Saavn and SoundCloud. CoCreato currently has 70 monthly subscribers and 250 others, who prefer to avail of the hourly package.
Three months ago, it-up tied-up with two international studios—London-based GeJay Records and Stockholm-based Folk Studios to promote artists globally. For producing cover songs, it charges around Rs.6,000-Rs.7,000 whereas, for the original track it could go higher, from Rs.12,000 to Rs.15,000— depending on the length of the track and audio/video preference. Currently operational only in Nagpur, CoCreato plans to expand to Pune by this October, followed by Mumbai, Kolkata, Bengaluru and Delhi over the next two years. Apart from adopting the franchise model, it intends to use its app as an aggregator for music studios and jamming spaces. While the former will run on the basis of content production and subscription fees, the latter will work for a commission. The start-up is looking to raise Rs.1.2 crore and is in talks with a few angel investors for the same.
While there is another app in the recording studio aggregator space, Vampr, the founders of CoCreato believe that their combined offering of infrastructure and network is what will set them apart. So if you’re an upcoming musician or singer on the lookout for an affordable studio and accessible network of artists, CoCreato might be a good place to start.