New £1.3m GigPig funding will help live music sector ramp up capacity

From left: Chris Tottman and GigPig founders Kit Muir-Rogers and Michael Forster

Live music marketplace, GigPig, has revealed a £1.3m seed investment round led by Haatch Ventures and Notion Capital.

The latest investment will be used by the Manchester-based tech business to create thousands of new gigging opportunities in towns and cities across the UK, helping more pubs and bars boost their revenues with live music and give artists more ways to earn a good living gigging.

GigPig is also planning to launch new data-led products and services, as well as an app for artists.

This includes market insights for venues, allowing operators to better understand the impact live music can have on sales and customer satisfaction. Its app will make it easier for artists to find and get booked for gigs.

Investors in the seed round include Chris Tottman of Notion Capital and Mark Bennett of Haatch.

Angel investors and music industry experts Chris Meehan, Richard Flint, Wolfgang Alistat and Andrea Mihalovits are among a syndicate of individuals also backing the firm to drive forward its next phase of growth.

Michael Forster, GigPig CEO, said: “With the hospitality sector facing unprecedented challenges, we believe our mission to help every pub and bar maximise their potential with live music is more important than ever.

“Our platform has already helped hundreds of venues improve customer satisfaction, drive footfall and increase sales while giving thousands of artists an easier way to earn money gigging. We’re just getting started and the investment announced today will help bring the benefits of live music to more communities in towns and cities across the UK.”

Chris Tottman, Partner, Notion Capital, said: “When we met Michael and Kit we were deeply inspired by GigPig’s mission, rooted in their combined 30+ year industry experience of the grassroots and mainstream live music industries.

“We are invested in their vision to build an entirely new category that gives hospitality venues access to thousands of artists, with the ability to discover and book local talent at their fingertips.”

He added: “Not only does this give every pub or bar the opportunity to become a stage, but importantly it means artists will get more gigs, with faster and more reliable payments. In many ways I believe GigPig is fuelling a cultural movement, where, for the first time in history, venues and artists can connect at scale on a single digital platform.

“With millions of potential customers globally as the network scales, this was an incredibly compelling investment opportunity to fuel the next period of growth in the UK and internationally.”

Mark Bennett, Partner, Haatch, said: “GigPig is one of the most exciting start-ups in the UK right now, having developed a platform that connects venues and artists at unparalleled scale. While gigging in pubs and bars has long been the bedrock of the UK music scene, GigPig’s technology and industry expertise is set to drive explosive growth of live music in the hospitality sector.

“This will not only help give thousands of venues a proven way to increase sales, but importantly provide artists with a platform to launch their careers and earn money doing what they love most. Haatch is proud to support their mission as GigPig turns up the volume across the country.”

Since launching in June 2022, GigPig has become the fastest growing live music marketplace in the UK and currently operates in more than 22 cities across the country.

More than 600 bars, pubs and clubs have signed up, booking more than 31,000 gigs so far. This includes national chains such as BrewDog, Albert Schloss, Arc Inspirations, NQ64, Stack and East Coast Concepts, while more than 6,000 artists are using the platform to get gigs, earning a collective £8m since the live music marketplace launched.

The investment follows on from the publication of an industry-first report by a consortium of representatives from the live music sector, which found the ‘seed’ music scene – musicians who gig at hospitality venues – is braced for dramatic growth, with nearly nine out of 10 venues (87%) planning to increase their live music offering over the next 12 months.

The growth of the ‘seed’ music scene could add £2.4bn to the UK’s struggling hospitality sector, with live music estimated to boost the annual revenue of venues such as pubs, bars, restaurants and nightclubs by an average of £107,000.

The report also found artists who gig in hospitality venues take home up to 50% more than the typical musician, with annual average earnings of £25,000. If all artists were to gig in the ‘seed’ music sector, the earning potential could be as much as £1.3bn – an estimated £400m in extra earnings for UK musicians.

Click here to sign up to receive our new South West business news...