Want to help the homeless, veterans or victims of natural disasters? Elizabeth Vargas suggests sitting back and watching a Taylor Swift—or maybe a classic rock—video with her streaming app. The Seattle native, who now calls Newport Beach home, has partnered with a major content owner, Universal Music Group, on the venture—Edge Music Network—which launched in the spring and gives 10 percent of subscriber fees to a handful of charities.
She learned about helping others early from her family—her father, David, was a minister. As for the music aspect, she became addicted to MTV in her teens. When it switched from videos to reality shows, Vargas saw a gap she knew she could fill.
With family in Orange County, she relocated to Newport and started putting together Edge Music Network. She even flew to China to nail down one key investor (billionaire businessman and philanthropist John Paul DeJoria of Paul Mitchell fame) who was doing business there. She also did her homework: “I went to every seminar, learned about every streaming media, learned how to be my own CEO and CTO.” If you think she’s just too small to compete with monster-size YouTube, Vargas can quickly rattle off the differences. There’s the lack of annoying YouTube ads for users who pay a $9.99 subscription fee (and minimal ads for those who use it for free), the charity aspect and a bonus feature: Users can build reward points for discounts at concerts and music fests, and on related merchandise.
Vargas credits much of her success to her mother, Lyn, who preached the family mantra: “If you don’t ask, it’s always going to be no.” And music, she says, is her passion: “My dream was to someday own MTV,” she says. “And now I have my own digital MTV. That’s so exciting.”
Vintage muscle cars, stimulating people, Newport Beach, golf clubs that help her swing, stylish no-iron attire for business travel
The price of Virgin Galactic spaceflight tickets, overpriced festival passes, people who tell her she can’t do something