British entrepreneur turns rockstar in Chile
Just months after winning a grant to set up a travel website in the South American country, Sarah Eaglesfield now has her own record label and hit song.
Monday, April 23, 2012
Category: Business - Technology - Music
British entrepreneur Sarah Eaglesfield set up a new website to introduce European bands to a Latin American market. (Photo courtesy of Suddenvibe Records)
Six months after she left England to set up a travel website in Chile, Sarah Eaglesfield is now a rock star, owns a record label and is all over Chilean radio.
“I woke up one morning, and heard our song, 'Shark' playing on the radio,” Eaglesfield told PRWeb, “it was a very surreal moment.”
The British musician and entrepreneur came to Chile after being offered a US$40,000 grant, working visa, free office space, mentoring and connections with Chilean and foreign venture capital funds as part of the Start-up Chile program.
She was supposed to create an online tourism company, but upon arriving to Santiago quickly saw an opportunity in another field, and pitched a new business plan.
"I wanted to find a way for European artists to be able to break into Latin America without having to become successful in the USA beforehand," said Eaglesfield. "Luckily, the people who administer the grant also saw the opportunity and gave their full support to Suddenvibe Records."
To test her business model, Eaglesfield reunited her college band, Flightside, a pioneer in free distribution of music on the internet.
"I looked at the calendar one day and realised it had been exactly 20 years since we got Flightside together. I thought maybe it would be fun to record a few tracks,” she said. “It was an exercise in test-marketing more than anything else, I wanted to do the absolute best for the other bands I'd signed to the label, but I didn't mind messing up and making mistakes with my own band."
After distributing a demo copy of one of the songs, “Shark,” Eaglesfield’s test run soon became raging success, first being “lapped up” by local radio stations and later going viral on Youtube.
"It's been a real domino effect. The song is getting airplay all over the world now. I'll always be a business woman first and foremost, but it is pretty cool to be having a rock star moment, it's a mix between having a midlife crisis and being a teenager all over again!"