Back in 2019, AIM Chair Ed St John saw the need to create a home for music industry innovation in Australia. From this vision, came the AIM Innovation Hub – iHUB in short – a revolutionary startup incubator just for music businesses.
Says AIM Chair Ed St John: “The Australian Institute of Music launched the iHUB for one simple reason: nobody else was doing it. Music technology innovation wasn’t being prioritised by any of the major players in the Australian music industry – and the startups that were emerging had nowhere to go for support.
“As a leading music education institution, it’s our job to be at the cutting edge of new technology and innovation. We adapt to changes in the industry by adapting our courses and delivery. And we adapted by recognising the importance of supporting music entrepreneurs – particularly in emerging technologies.”
Put simply, the AIM iHUB is a breeding ground for creativity, entrepreneurship, and business growth for young music businesses. Since its founding, the incubator has nurtured the success of 20 early-stage companies as they developed new music products and services and brought them to market.
Based at AIM campuses in Melbourne and Sydney, the AIM iHUB bridges academia and entrepreneurship, exposing students to ideas, tools and networks to help bring their build their entrepreneurial ideas in a supported environment.
“Students graduate from AIM with the job-ready skills they need to build a successful career in music. Exposure to iHUB reflects the future focus of those budding music entrepreneurs and is another reason that students choose to come to AIM,” says AIM CEO John Chalmers.
Initially headed up by “serial entrepreneur” Stephen Hunt, the iHUB reigns were handed over to Tristonne Forbes when Stephen moved across to manage his own music startup Music Health. An early member of the iHUB, Music Health is now enjoying significant international success.
Tristonne Forbes, Tristonne Forbes is a new venture builder who has been at the forefront of creating environments where innovation can thrive. By fostering collaboration between entrepreneurs, industry and capital participants in the iHUB can tackle challenges head-on, paving the way for innovative solutions and creating the companies that will shape the future.
So what exactly is AIM iHUB?
Bringing a new product to market can be challenging in any industry. Instead of working alone, startups that join the iHUB incubator have access to a network of experts and colleagues who inspire action, make essential industry connections and guide the decision-making process.
“The iHUB is a community of experienced music entrepreneurs, venture building experts, industry experts and gatekeepers, as well as investors, that together help make the journey from idea to revenue a slightly straighter line.”
AIM alumni Jaz Yates’ Journey of Sucess
Jaz Yates graduated from her Bachelor of Entertainment Management at AIM in 2017 and came to AIM iHUB after some time in the industry, where she developed Releasr: a centralised information management system that helps music professionals to streamline and simplify promotion.
“Jaz is a quintessential music-tech founder with a drive and ambition to change the industry for the better. She came to the Music Startup Amplifier boot camp in September last year,” Tristonne recalls, “and after working on the idea for a few months had progressed enough to be able to join the AIM iHUB incubator.”
“She now has a beta version of the platform, pilot customers and is ready to raise some money to get the company to the next level. The iHUB has supported her all the way with coaching, introductions and information.”
Benefiting the Entire Music Industry
“There are so many opportunities in the music industry to deliver more value to people right across the sector: from making it easier for talent and events to find each other, improving how music festivals operate, bringing net zero technology to sound stages, or enabling artists to get closer to their fans. That doesn’t even include all the ways music is becoming a bigger part of our everyday lives, like making music therapy easy in the aged care sector,” Tristonne says.
Building an interest in creating the future industry and entrepreneurial skills takes time. That’s where the iHUB comes in.”
The iHUB is an Open Music Industry Community!
Whether you’re an AIM student, music professional, entrepreneur or music lover, you are invited to join the AIM iHUB mailing list to be kept informed on the progress and growth of this ground-breaking incubator.