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Behind the Music

A music site's uploading tool cranks up the sales volume to get things rocking and rolling.

Dave Stack traded a dotcom gig for the music biz when he opened an online music marketplace, MusicStack, and tuned up the buying and selling technology behind the music.

MusicStack is a collection of record stores, all competing on price and selection, offering both new and used music. "Worrying about fresh inventory is not a problem," says Stack of his $5 million business. An uploading function updates site selections in real time and allows the site's 3,000 sellers to manage their own wares.

"The sheer volume of items on the site makes me different," adds the 34-year-old programmer. With 15 million items, including CDs, vinyl, MiniDiscs and 8-tracks, Stack's storefront eclipses retail giants and eBay.

The site runs itself while Stack tweaks the back-end tools from home base--an extra space in his Cleveland home. There, Stack watches sales soar to the tune of 1,000 items each day. Gone are the days of building inventory by personally visiting record shops. Says Stack, "Now sellers find me."

This story appears in the June 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »