Epic acquires Bandcamp music store and community

Epic Games has struck an unexpected deal by acquiring online music store and community Bandcamp.

Bandcamp is best known as a platform that provides ways for fans to directly support independent musicians while giving artists an average of 82% of every sale. And as part of the acquisition, both parties cited their shared goals in building artist-friendly platforms that allow creators to thrive.

“Bandcamp has built an incredible community and business where up-and-coming artists can succeed through the direct support of their fans, with one of the best revenue models and terms in music,” noted Steve Allison, vice president and general store manager at Epic. “It aligns closely with Epic’s approach of supporting creators across all media and enabling them to connect directly with their fans.”

Following this agreement, Bandcamp will continue to operate as a standalone marketplace and community, with co-founder and CEO Ethan Diamond remaining with the team. This means no additional changes to platform operations, including Bandcamp Fridays and other creator promotions.

The biggest changes will come behind the scenes. Diamond said this deal with Epic will help Bandcamp expand internationally and further develop aspects such as mobile apps, merch tools, payment system, and search and discovery features. Vinyl pressing and live streaming services were also mentioned.

“Bandcamp’s mission is to help spread the healing power of music by creating a community where artists thrive through the direct support of their fans,” Diamond noted. “In Epic, we have found a partner who believes as deeply as we do that the future of music, and of art itself, depends on creating fair and inclusive communities like the one our fans and artists have contributed. We’re excited to work alongside the Epic team to accelerate our mission and pursue our shared goal of empowering more creators in a fair and open way.

This is the second move into a non-gaming space Epic has made in the last year, previously acquiring the artist and portfolio platform ArtStation last April.

Bandcamp, according to Epic, will play an “important role” in the company’s vision to create a creator marketplace ecosystem for users across content, technology, games, art, music, and more.

Alice P. Darby