Soundtrap, the online music and audio recording studio, has announced it has raised $6 million in a Series A round led by Nordic VC firm Industrifonden, with existing investors and former CFO of Spotify Peter Sterky contributing to the round. This brings the total amount raised by the startup to $8.5 million.
The Series A round will help fund Soundtrap's international expansion, as well as its entry into new markets in the education and consumer sectors.
Soundtrap was founded in Sweden like its industry peers Spotify, Soundcloud, and Tidal, and competes directly with Apple's Garageband. Unlike Garageband, which is restricted to Apple devices, Soundtrap is browser-based and can be used across all devices and operating systems.
The startup was founded in 2012 by Gabriel Sjöberg, Björn Melinder, Fredrik Posse, and Per Emanuelsson with the vision to democratise music and creative audio production, making it accessible to users with all levels of musical interest and abilities.
As such, ease of use and collaboration capabilities were high priorities for the startup.
"It's cool that you can start a tune on a tablet and finish it on a smartphone or vice versa anywhere you are," said co-founder and CEO Emanuelsson.
Since its official launch in June 2015, Soundtrap has garnered half a million users from 200 countries around the world. At the current rate of "multiple thousands of new users per day", the startup expects to hit the million-user mark by the end of the year.
Soundtrap features a multi-track timeline, similar to other recording apps like Audacity, and offers an extensive library of loops, built-in instruments, and the ability to record external instruments.
After recognising significant uptake by educators, the startup decided to build a separate version of its product with features designed for educators and students. For example, collaborating students operate in a secure, closed walled garden environment protected from the rest of the internet.
At the start of the year, Soundtrap rolled out the education version of its product aimed at K-12 to higher-education markets. The startup claims that it is currently gaining more than 200 new schools every week, predominantly from the US, Europe, and Australia.
Soundtrap is also an official Google for Education Partner, with the education version included in Google's "Creative Apps for Chromebook" bundle, a program launched in June this year.