Investment Spotlight: Cicada, Cohort 6

Introducing Cicada, a platform to help musicians monetize their live performances


Cicada is a SaaS platform that helps musicians monetize through live performances.

While streaming platforms have grown in popularity, they often provide limited financial returns for artists.

For example, Spotify reportedly pays artists between $0.003 and $0.005 per stream. This means an artist would need millions of streams to make a significant income.

How Cicada works:

  1. The artist can create an online popup store on the platform to sell merch.
  2. During live performances, the platform allows real-time tipping.
  3. Cicada also has audience engagement tools, such as letting fans access real-time lyrics and polls.

After launching the product earlier this year, Cicada has 442 users, and 37 paying customers, generating $1,746 in monthly revenue.

The team is two co-founders, Mircea (CEO) and Mark (CTO). Mircea interviewed 15 potential cofounders before meeting Mark. Searching the YC cofounder matching platform, LinkedIn, startup forums, and subreddits. Eventually, he matched with a developer on the YC platform, who introduced him to Mark. Shortly after meeting, they both decided to work full-time on Cicada.

We were quickly impressed by their product velocity and user growth week after week, so we invested $25k into the company.

If you’re a musician and looking to monetize through your live performances, visit to get started.

If you’re a team of multiple builder-founders interested in joining the next Founder University, applications are open for our January 2024 cohort.

We review applications on a rolling basis.

Learn more and apply at

Presh Dineshkumar

Chief of Staff at LAUNCH

Presh has worked at LAUNCH for the past 5 years and held a variety of positions at the firm. He started off on the media side working on growth & marketing for This Week In Startups and LAUNCH Festival, then transitioned to the investment team working on the LAUNCH Accelerator. Now Presh is focused on running the Founder University’s 12-week program and Founder University Podcast.

Build and launch your product

Work on your idea or MVP for 12 weeks. If you launch, get users, and demonstrate product velocity, you'll have a chance at receiving a $25k investment.