DigiTour, the startup that produces live concerts with celebs from YouTube, Vine and other digital platforms, expects to more than double the number of shows next year and has several other business initiatives in the pipeline.
In 2014, the company sold 120,000 tickets for 60 total shows, including three national tours with YouTube supergroup O2L, Vine’s Jack & Jack (teen music duo Jack Gilinsky and Jack Johnson), singing group Fifth Harmony, YouTube vlogger Tyler Oakley and others. Next year, DigiTour is planning to stage 141 shows with a total of 350,000 tickets.
“I think that teen culture has validated that there are not social stars — they’ve blurred with mainstream stars,” DigiTour CEO and co-founder Meridith Valiando Rojas said. “Teens don’t want to just buy a concert ticket. They want to meet the stars that they have an affinity for.”
Valiando Rojas calls DigiTour a “Coachella for teens,” referring to the annual music festival in California. Indeed, the company has signed Neil Ryan, main-stage production manager of Coachella, to lead production management for DigiTour’s tours and festivals. Ryan previously worked at AEG for 13 years.
To fund its growth, DigiTour, which currently has 12 employees, is lining up a Series A round of investment for January, Valiando Rojas said. The L.A.-based company raised a seed round of financing of just under $2 million this year from investors including Ryan Seacrest; Advance Publications, parent of Conde Nast Publications; talent manager Guy Oseary; Machinima co-founder Allen DeDebovoise; and Ben Silverman, founder and CEO of Electus.
“We are not desperate for cash but we are looking to scale,” Valiando Rojas said.
DigiTour’s 2015 lineup is scheduled to include an all-day festival June 6, 2015, at Citi Field in New York, for which 25,000 tickets will go on sale. DigiTour has not announced talent that will be appearing at the New York event or its other shows for next year.
In another new part of DigiTour’s business, it has begun producing, distributing and selling content related to its tours. The first will be a documentary about Jack & Jack, to be available on Christmas Day 2014. DigiTour has sold more than 10,000 pre-orders for the movie, priced at $4.99 for the download only with bundles including merchandise available for up to $19.99 each.
In January, DigiTour is planning to launch a merchandise-subscription service geared around digital stars (similar to Birchbox) priced at $10 per month.
DigiTour also has started to work with brands on in-person promotions featuring digital stars. Verizon Wireless will open a new store on Chicago’s Magnificent Mile on Nov. 15, with Jack & Jack and social-media star Matthew Lee Espinosa appearing at the grand opening and posting about the promo under a pact with DigiTour.
“Brands are coming to us for unconventional things,” Valiando Rojas said.