|Industry:||Arts, Entertainment and Recreation|
|Amounts:||various Find what funding programs you qualify for|
As a student in bio-psychology at Wilfred Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario, Corey Su realized his true passion lies somewhere other than science. "I've been a musician for as long as I can remember," he says. "But with a traditional Chinese background, my family thought 'what's a prestigious job for my child to have? Either go be a doctor or go be a lawyer." After quitting his day-job and establishing a home studio, he turned to the Centre for Business Plan Development and went ahead with a professional business planner.
When he graduated in 2009, Su moved to Toronto, and while he worked at a marketing firm specializing in non-profits, he continued to teach folk, blues and jazz to music students, and he played acoustic music himself in downtown pubs. At the marketing firm, he met Ellis Iyomahan, who was originally from Nigeria, where he'd established a recording, producing and artist development company. With the move to Toronto, he'd brought Studizzy with him. Iyomahan's production experience leaned toward hip hop and techno, but Su's more roots-oriented style seemed to provide a perfect complement. "I guess I'm the analog guy and Ellis is the digital guy," says Su. "My expertise is in music theory and songwriting and live music, and Ellis is fascinated with plug-ins, with sampling, with MPC machines and synthesizers. He's also not a bad keyboard player. We kind of teamed up and we decided to move forward with something that I guess we always knew was a dream."
Su decided to make the move. "I had one of those moments of clarity," says Su. "I don't really want to do this job anymore." The two quit their jobs with the marketing firm and began to focus on Studizzy, seeking out promising artists they could help develop by writing and producing songs for them. At the moment, they're working with up-and-coming and veteran performers in a number of genres, including pop/dance, hip hop and R&B. Studizzy began operating out of Iyomahan's home studio, and the team quickly gained a reputation as creative players in the city's music scene. "We've been relying on referrals, associating our names with artists we've made big or that are relatively famous, and that takes things up a notch," says Su. Their artists include Camille Douglas, who has been nominated for a Juno award and is about to release a new single and video.
Studizzy is a big supporter of Toronto artists, and make efforts to get the word out about people they like. And the social networking and support is returned and generates more buzz. "What can you give each other?" says Su, explaining the process. "It's very similar to that old school barter-trade style, and I definitely support that." But they know Studizzy can be much bigger. An off-site, professional studio would give them a greater presence and clout in the Toronto music scene. They turned to the Centre for Business Plan Development to put their vision into a form that could be used to seek financing and funding. "I was very happy with the work that we got back," says Su. "We need to put ourselves out there on a professional level, and that's why we decided to team up with a business planner."
Su believes that having a plan allows you to seize opportunities. "I want to say at each and every point that I wasn't given this opportunity – it was more I deserve it because I took it. I guess if you ask me where will I be in three years, five years, I would say doing the exact same thing, except that maybe I have a slightly nicer car, a couple more guitars and some more industry know-how and pull, so you can call in whoever you think would be great on a track."
Imagine how a professionally prepared business plan could help grow your business. For a free consultation, call 1-855-892-2506.Please note our Centre is not affiliated to programs profiled in the above article and no claim is made that funding is due to our Centre unless stated.