Case Study: Connecting Trac With $100k
I love music. I used to be a musician who wrote songs, played shows, and even I had stickers with my name on them. For about seven years, from 8th grade to Sophomore year of college, I worked as hard as I could to “make it”. I’ve even witnessed and helped greatness at the earliest stages. I helped teach Alec Benjamin guitar, before he got famous. He now has 14 million monthly listeners on Spotify alone. Not bad!
For various reasons, when i was 20, I gave up on music due to lack of progress and instead dove into venture backed entrepreneurship and i’ve been there ever since. It was this reason when I met Cardin at Trac, I got so excited by the prospects for the company and needed to get involved.
First of all, what is Trac? Well, to understand track is to understand 6 simple words.
Trac acts as a way to help more independent artists make it on their own. They work with the streaming platforms to increase distribution of music, help you analyze money coming in, assist with branding packages and really just gives you the tools of a major label for anyone to access. I look at Trac and I think back to my own days as a singer songwriter and wonder if I could have made it if I signed myself. I’ll never be able to go back, but I realized I could help the future Mat get what he needed to succeed. So let’s go into the Trac story and how we connected them to $100k in investment capital from a firm I truly respect.
The Trac Investment Story
It started off with a podcast interview. I found them online and it piqued my interest so I sent the general email a request to come onto my podcast. Cardin replied and was down to come on.
After the podcast interview, Cardin and I were talking about his efforts to fundraise for Trac and it was around this time I was getting Seedscout (Fka Forward Thinking City at this point) off the ground. I wanted to try to get him funded through the process that I built because I was so excited about Trac.
We went back and forth as I was really trying to understand his company inside and out so I could pitch it to investors in my network. We exchanged a few more emails about the Trac investment opportunity.
For various reasons, between the months of November 2020 and May of 2021, there wasn’t much activity. Forward Thinking City was morphing into Seedscout, there was a lot of turbulence, and I wasn’t in a space to get Trac funding from my network at this point. You could say my excitement got ahead of me or I put the cart in front of the horse. Fortunately, this changed in May of 2021. At this point, i was fully transitioned to Seedscout, had a network full of investors, and Trac insane traction too. So I went to work.
I sent the deal out to every investor I knew. Naturally, this wasn’t a fit for many and some no’s came back.
With that said, within the flurry of no’s we got some yes’s and I started to connect Cardin to my network. Early investors who expressed interest were
Niko Bonatsos at General Catalyst
Mahreen Saleem from LAUNCH
Zibo Gao at Intonation Ventures
Pat Matthews at Active Capital
Tyler Tringas from Calm Capital (fka Earnest Capital)
Clara Brenner from Urban Innovation Fund
Eric Ries (LTSE & The Lean Startup)
Daniel Gulati of TrebleVC
Jeremy Kuo (Syndicate Lead and now partner at Stonks)
Of those investors we connected Cardin to, one of them ended writing a $100k check. Can you guess who? Well, one defining characteristic of Trac is that its revenue growth was exploding. Some investors like this and some like to get into before the explosion.But one firm listed up there LOVES revenue generating businesses that lead to good profits, steady growth, and lots of jobs. That firm is Calm Fund, led by Tyler Tringas. Tyler and Cardin hit it off and it led to a six figure investment by the end.
It was so cool getting the email newsletter from Calm Fund with a deal that I scouted listed first as new deals in their portfolio that year.
Trac is an amazing story. Cardin and I started off hundreds of miles away from eachother, and in a different time from when I was into music. Yet, our paths collided and I was able to help in a small way on his vision to helping millions of artists sign themselves and be their own label. Cardin has built an amazing company with really exiting traction and I am just so excited to have been able to play a small part in its continued rise and share this story with you all today.