Friday, March 06, 2009

Not so Fabulous

It was only yesterday I was reading someone predicting that there would probably be a cull of about 98% of the independent online video sites by the end of the year, as attempts to square a triangle of costs, revenues and user base result in calculator meltdown.

Then comes this press release:

FABCHANNEL STOPS ITS ACTIVITIES

Online concert channel Fabchannel.com ceases its activities as of today, due to bad economic prospects within the music and online advertising market.

During the last nine years, Fabchannel have been successfully promoting concert recordings of national and international artists online among a large international audience.

The Fabchannel business model bases itself on two essential ingredients: international streaming rights and international advertising/sponsoring revenue. After a substantial investment in 2007, Fabchannel has been focusing fully on increasing its reach among the international audience and the development and implementation of online advertising formats and partnerships.

After an energetic start in 2008 with the introduction of video commercials on Fabchannel.com, media partnerships with renowned news sites like nu.nl and Spiegel.de as well as signing a worldwide partnership with Universal Music Group, in the last few months it has been getting ever more difficult to reach the set targets. The audience has not increased as planned, mostly due to the majority of major record labels giving no consent to record their artists. At the same time, the online advertising and sponsoring market has been put under big pressure due to decreasing budgets of advertisers and sponsors.

The management and shareholders of Fabchannel expect that this situation is not going to change during the next years. Therefore, they have jointly taken the decision to stop all activities in order to avoid getting into financial problems and, for example, lose the possibility to use the archive they have been building in the future.

Fabchannel’s concert archive will go offline on Friday 13 March. During the upcoming months, Fabchannel will strive to make suitable arrangements with employees, customers and suppliers.

Probably wise move to protect the archive rather than plough on and lose it - and it offers a glimmer of hope that there might be a rebirth sometime in the mythic post-stimulus future.