NH7.in, an online music streaming platform, has launched its music store on Flyte, Flipkart's online digital music store. But when we say 'store', we don't actually mean that a separate site/microsite has been launched by duo. Instead, NH7 has made available its database of albums and individual tracks from independent artists (from India and around the world) for purchase on Flyte, but with NH7 branding, of course (see pic below).
"We were tired of not being able to find legal avenues to download the music of indie acts from around the country. So we got together with Flipkart and put together a brand new store just for indie music from India and around the world," read a post on the NH7 site.
When we checked the 'store', there were 45 albums available in three genres â€“ rock, electronic/dance and folk. And the artistes/groups featured include Indian Ocean, Midival Punditz, Scribe, Peter Cat Recording Co and Pentagram, among others. NH7 also features a few breakout artistes like Skyharbor and Dualist Inquiry. The music is available in English, Hindi and Punjabi, and you will also find a few instrumentals.
The cost of a single song ranges between Rs 6 and Rs 15 while an album can cost you anywhere between Rs 20 and Rs 150.
The NH7 site claims to have more 2,000 tracks across a number of genres from over 200 Indian and international artistes. So in all probability, we will see a lot more additions to the store in the near future. Also, NH7 will do a revenue share with both Flipkart and the artistes for the purchases made on the store.
But one question still remains. Why has NH7 partnered with Flipkart in the first place? Especially as it was already planning to launch a full-featured e-commerce platform (it had earlier sold digital downloads of Pentagram's Bloodywood, as well as tickets to the Bacardi NH7 Weekender and the Eristoff Invasion).
The answer came from Shreyas Srinivasan, director at OML Digital (Only Much Louder or OML is NH7's parent company)."The purpose of the store is to get independent music out to people who have never heard these artistes before. And we felt that the best way to achieve that is to be on a well-known platform like Flipkart. When Flyte was launched, we were already in the process of building our own music store. But all of us bought some music on Flyte and loved the whole experience. So we decided to go ahead with this move," he said.
OML, a music, live events and youth media company co-founded by Vijay Nair (CEO) and Girish Talwar in 2002, had earlier received an undisclosed amount in funding from CA Media and Zodius Advisors.
"Due to our network in the independent music ecosystem, we have access to a significant number of artistes. Our relation with Flipkart enables them to reach out to a vast and untapped fan base and subsequently gives online shoppers access to great new music," Srinivasan added. According to him, the NH7 site would continue to sell tickets to their festivals, as well as all related merchandise.
The company is also planning a bunch of features for better discovery of music. One of them is to release monthly podcasts where established artistes will pick their favourite new artistes, thus allowing their own communities to discover new talents.
We wondered why Flipkart had not promoted the NH7 store in a big way, but Srinivasan clarified that the e-commerce giant is convinced that independent music is a huge opportunity (and something it should support). Hence, we can expect to see more publicity from them.
(Edited by Sanghamitra Mandal)