How global fan exchange aims to revolutionize the music industry

The music industry is ripe for disruption, here’s how Horizon’s fan engagement platform empowers musicians and their fans

5 min readApr 23, 2021

By Vanessa Malone

We believe that blockchain is revolutionizing fan engagement.

A few months ago, Grammy-nominated rapper Lil Yachty sold $275,000 worth of $YACHTY tokens to his fans in just 21 minutes. Fans purchased the tokens for $15 each and gained exclusive fan perks and access to Lil Yachty.¹

NFTs, another blockchain opportunity, have also taken the world by storm. British auction house Christie’s sold an NFT by digital artist Beeple for $69 million.² The NBA’s new blockchain trading card platform Top Shot has already generated over $230 million in gross sales for its NFTs, including $200,000 for just one LeBron James highlight.³

These new waves of successful fan engagement initiatives driven by blockchain technology are highlighting the desire for fans to feel connected to their favorite celebrities in new ways.

This movement is also incentivizing creators to leverage their brand to generate new revenue streams.

It’s why we are bringing our Global Fan Exchange “GFX” methodology to an industry we believe is ripe for disruption — music.

The music industry is continually evolving and forcing musicians to find alternative revenue sources. Here’s a few key reasons why.

1. The rise of streaming

Streaming has dramatically impacted the music industry and continues to change how we consume and experience music. According to the Recording Industry Association of America® (RIAA), streaming revenues grew 20% to $8.8 billion in 2019, amounting to almost 80% of all recorded music revenues.⁴

Source: Digital Music News

Unfortunately, streaming platforms are known for paying very little per stream so the average artist typically doesn’t make much, especially after services and labels take their cuts.

Despite this, streaming has become a critical play for musicians to promote their music to fans, and even can help determine a song or catalog’s monetary value.

2. COVID-19

The majority of artists make their money from touring and performing, but with COVID-19, this income source has come to a screeching halt.⁵ Even with a light at the end of the pandemic tunnel, it could be months before fans are comfortable crowding into a stadium to see their favorite musician.

Artists and their supporting teams have been tasked with figuring out the digital equivalent of a VIP concert experience. Even before COVID-19, we’ve seen an increase in virtual concerts, Virtual Reality experiences, and other technology solutions to communicate and build relationships with fans. The pandemic has expedited the need to adopt innovative fan engagement solutions.

3. Recognition of artists masters as an asset class

The current climate is leading artists to sell their catalogs, publishing rights, and music royalties.

Buyers are eager to scoop up music IP. Hipgnosis Songs Fund has reportedly spent more than $1.7 billion on high-profile music acquisitions since it launched in 2018.⁶ The Fund is capitalizing on low interest rates and the rise of streaming. In today’s digital world, songs decades old are proving longevity. Fleetwood Mac’s 1977 song “Dreams” hit the Billboard Hot 100 recently after a trend was started on TikTok with the song playing in the background.

For all the reasons above, artists are more willing to cash in on their work. These are just a few reasons we believe our fan engagement platform Global Fan Exchange is positioned to empower musicians.

How GFX empowers musicians

GFX is Horizon’s next generation fan engagement platform that will give fans the opportunity to invest, drive awareness, and share in the success of musicians’ ventures.

Unlike $YACHTY tokens which are not classified as an investment and do not represent any rights to IP or monetary value, GFX is introducing the next generation of fan engagement where fans will own a real equity stake in their favorite artists’ music royalties, tours, and other ventures.

Musicians can utilize GFX’s fan engagement solutions to help fund their next big ventures. Funds could be used to accelerate a new business idea, sell a percent of their music royalty, re-record their masters, fund their next tour, create memorabilia NFTs (non-fungible tokens), and more.

Not only are musicians empowered to generate their own revenue streams driven by their personal brands, GFX also represents a revolutionary opportunity for musicians to give back to fans who played a major role in their success. In exchange for letting fans own a percentage of the venture, fans become brand ambassadors with a vested interest in the artist’s success. This offers a huge advantage in the competitive world of streaming. Fans also gain access to unique engagement opportunities, fan perks, and potential dividends in addition to owning a stake in their favorite musician’s future.

Through GFX’s affiliation with ‘Upstream,’ a Horizon-powered, regulated stock exchange for digital securities, fans will be able to trade eligible shares from a user-friendly trading app.

GFX offers an innovative fan engagement platform to help seamlessly manage a musician’s entire offering. Interested musicians can reach the management team at fans can learn more and join the investor waitlist at

About Global Fan Exchange

Global Fan Exchange is a hub for fans to invest in and ultimately trade shares tied to the income streams of their favorite athletes, musicians, and entertainers. Visit us at

About Upstream:

Upstream, a MERJ Exchange Market, is a fully regulated global stock exchange for digital securities. Powered by Horizon’s proprietary matching engine technology, the exchange will enable investors to trade shares in SPACs, high-growth startups, and other unique asset classes directly from the app Interested issuers can reach the team at


1 NASDAQ; 2 BBC; 3 CNBC; 4 RIAA; 5 Torrent Freak; 6 NY Times


The foregoing post contains forward looking statements relating to the business of Global Fan Exchange and its affiliated companies. All statements, other than statements of historical fact included herein are “forward-looking statements.” These forward-looking statements are often identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “believes,” “expects” or similar expressions, involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties. Although Global Fan Exchange believes that the expectations reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, they do involve assumptions, risks and uncertainties, and these expectations may prove to be incorrect. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this post. Global Fan Exchange does not assume any duty to update these forward-looking statements.

GFX is not a registered broker dealer and will not take commission based fees. Securities transactions are conducted through registered broker dealers in the United States and internationally on Upstream, which is a MERJ Exchange market. MERJ Exchange is a licensed Securities Exchange, an affiliate of the World Federation of Exchanges and full member of ANNA. THIS PRESS RELEASE SHALL NOT CONSTITUTE AN OFFER TO SELL SECURITIES OR THE SOLICITATION OF AN OFFER TO BUY SECURITIES IN ANY JURISDICTION WHERE SUCH OFFER OR SOLICITATION IS NOT PERMITTED




A MERJ Exchange Market. Ethereum-powered trading app for digital securities and NFTs. Learn more at