Today, music industry powerhouse Kobalt Music Group announced a new massive growth capital round has been completed. The fundraising round that comes in at $75 million, which is an impressive sum for any company in the music space. The round was led by Hearst Entertainment, which is somewhat surprising, given the fact that the two firms aren’t exactly in the same field as one another.
Kobalt has been winning favor with many musicians and those in the industry over the past several years thanks to an innovative and far-reaching royalty collections platform, which has been helping not only some of the most famous faces in the music world but also thousands of smaller, indie acts when it comes to identifying what monies they are owed and actually collecting those sums. Finding money online has become increasingly difficult due to the rise of streaming, and many companies are playing catch up, with many introducing new technologies in the past few years to assist in the task of tracking down millions of fractions of cents.
Laurent Hubert will replace Richard Sanders as President/Chief Revenue Officer for Kobalt Music Group, effective immediately, the company confirmed to Variety. Hubert came aboard last year to run the company’s newly formed B2B right management platform and investment division. He was previously President, Marketing & Creative, at BMG, and before that Chief Operating Officer at BMG Music Publishing. Sanders, who first joined the company in 2012 after stints at Sony Music Entertainment, RCA, V2 and Arista, will leave at the end of June, according to founder/CEO Willard Ahdritz, who issued the following statement: “Five years ago, I brought Richard Sanders to Kobalt to help us roll out an aggressive global expansion plan. Together, we have achieved all of that and more. He has played an instrumental role in getting us to where we are today. As we considered our future plans together, Richard felt that he had accomplished what we had set out to do together and it was now time for him to move on. He will remain with Kobalt until the end of June working alongside me and will always be part of the Kobalt family. As both a friend and a colleague, I cannot thank Richard […]
Kobalt’s very own collecting society AMRA yesterday confirmed a deal with Ole, which is, we’ll have you’ll know – well, they’ll have you know really, but whatever – either way, we’re (possibly) talking about “the world’s fastest-growing independent rights management company” here. As previously reported , Kobalt acquired and then relaunched AMRA in 2015, in a bid to create a new collecting society specifically designed for licensing song rights to digital services in multiple territories, while utilising its parent company’s much hyped data management and reporting tools. It was an evolution of the various collaborations that were struck up between the big music publishers and different European collecting societies after the former decided that they wanted to do direct deals with digital services over the mechanical rights in their Anglo-American repertoires – rather than leaving such deal-making to the collecting societies. The publisher/society collaborations were necessary because the streaming services also need to exploit the performing rights in the same songs, and these are controlled by the societies not the publishers (outside the US, on an exclusive basis). It also makes sense to pool the processing of data and royalties once the deals are done. The result has been […]
Kobalt Music Recordings has hired Silvia Montello as Senior Vice President, Supply Chain and Client Services. In her new role, Silvia will oversee both digital and physical supply chains for Kobalt Music Recordings and AWAL (Kobalt’s digital services platform), as well as the client management and client services teams. A 25 year veteran of the music industry, Montello was previously Group SVP, Recordings Operations & Integrations at BMG, and prior to that, was Marketing Director at Universal Music Catalogue, UK division. Silvia’s arrival at Kobalt coincides with the exit of Pete Dodge, Senior Vice President, Operations & Distribution, who joined Kobalt in 2012 to help establish the label services division. “I’m very excited to be a joining such a forward-thinking music company.” Silvia Montello Dodge will remain with Kobalt in the short term to assist with the transition process. Silvia Montello stated, “I’m very excited to be a joining such a forward-thinking music company. Kobalt both believes in putting artists first and develops the truly cutting edge technologies needed to support and develop them in this increasingly digital market environment.” Paul Hitchman, President of Kobalt Music Recordings, said, “I am very happy to welcome an executive of Silvia’s calibre […]
International collections of neighbouring rights money at UK recorded music licensing body PPL jumped 34% last year to £49.1m ($61m). The haul was PPL’s largest ever annual international collection, and came after four relatively flat years between 2012 and 2015 (inclusive). Revenue was collected from 33 countries in 2016, with major growth in contributions across France, Italy and Brazil in particular. The jump in 2016 revenue was helped by the weakening of the pound against the Euro following Brexit: from a currency neutral perspective, international collections grew by 18%. Peter Leathem, PPL Chief Executive (pictured) said, “I am very proud that PPL has been able to maintain the highest quality service, whilst ensuring continuous all-round growth and another record collection for our 90,000 members. The main reasons for this continued growth are our unrivalled relationships with global CMOs, as well as improved efficiency and processes in terms of the way we work with them. “PPL is very pleased to have achieved this record collection, which is consistent with our key goal to maximise our members’ earnings, and we are very optimistic about what 2017 has in store.” The news is likely to particularly benefit performers: according to stats in […]
One of the key part of AMRA’s pitch to companies like ole is its claim to be able to account 8-12 months faster by collecting directly from global services like Apple Music and Spotify.
Kobalt-owned global digital collecting society AMRA has announced its latest deal: with independent music rights management company ole. The partnership will see AMRA licensing the performing and mechanical rights for certain ole catalogues to digital music services. The deal isn’t quite “global” – it doesn’t include North America and some individual countries – but it’s wide-ranging nonetheless, with AMRA having digital licensing agreements in place with more than 20 digital music services so far. “ole is one of the most innovative music companies out there with a very strong client roster that will now be able to benefit from AMRA’s new centralised collections model,” said AMRA CEO Tomas Ericsson in a statement. “ole is a technology-driven company that matches our values on transparency, accuracy and speed of accounting.” For its part, ole’s SVP of finance and administration Chris Giansante hailed the deal: “Working alongside Tomas and his team, we’re confident that ole’s global collections will increase, benefitting our stakeholders in 2017 and beyond.” The deal comes at a busy time for ole. The Toronto-based company announced in September 2016 that it had spent $520m on acquisitions, while securing a new $500m credit facility to continue its buyout blitz. That […]
Vincent Clery-Melin has been named the new Managing Director of Domino Recording Co in London, working under the label’s founder Laurence Bell. His appointment comes four months after Domino Director John Dyer left the business to join Chrysalis Records. MBW understands that Clery-Melin left Kobalt Label Services towards the end of last year, and that his fellow senior colleague at KLS, VP Pete Dodge, also exited the company. Clery-Melin joined Kobalt in 2013 as global MD of AWAL , the digital distribution and marketing services company that Kobalt acquired at the end of 2011. A year later, he stepped up to become MD of Kobalt Label Services in the UK. “I have known Vincent for many years now and long admired his many skills and achievements.” Laurence Bell, Domino Clery-Melin joined Kobalt after managing Universal Music Group’s Cooperative Music (Co-Op) for eight years, before the business was sold to independent group [PIAS] in March 2013. At UMG’s Co-op, he worked with labels including Glassnote, Bella Union, Kitsune and Downtown Music. Welcoming Clery-Melin (pictured) to Domino, Laurence Bell said: “I have known Vincent for many years now and long admired his many skills and achievements. I thought it high time […]
Elvis Presley photographed in 1968. The King’s music will reign on through a new deal with Kobalt. Kobalt will administer and provide publishing services for a vast majority of the Elvis Presley catalogue of more than 1,000 songs, including such classics as “All Shook Up”, “Jailhouse Rock”, “A Little Less Conversation”, “Return to Sender”, “Can’t Help Falling in Love” and others through a new administrative agreement with Authentic Brands Group (ABG) and Elvis Presley Enterprises, LLC. The arrangement is effective from Jan. 1, 2017 and includes some of the “most desired tracks for film and TV trailers, soundtracks, and commercials,” notes Kobalt, the independent music services company, in a statement. Presley’s music continues to establish new records and find new fans almost 40 years after his death. The Wonder Of You (Legacy/RCA), a collection of re-workings of the late legend’s hits with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra , recently became Presley’s 13th U.K. No. 1 album — a record among solo artists. Only The Beatles have more No. 1s with 15. Presley also set a new record for the longest span between No. 1 albums in the U.K., having first topped the survey with his self-titled RCA debut in 1956. […]
Earlier this week, we reported on Kobalt’s campaign to get fans of Laura Marling to “pre-save” her next album ‘Semper Femina’ to their Spotify collections and playlists ahead of its release in March 2017. We thought Kobalt was taking advantage of a new feature made available to labels by Spotify, but that wasn’t the case. Instead, the company’s Kobalt Music Recordings team (formerly Kobalt Label Services) built its own technology to do the job. “ We’ve built a layer of technology on top of their API . Their API lets you add releases to someone’s library if they authorise it,” David Emery, VP of global marketing strategy at KMR, told Music Ally. “We’ve added a layer on top of that to do that when a future release comes out.” For Emery, this is an attempt to solve the perennial music-marketing problem of ensuring fans know when an artist they like has new music available. Not to mention the newer challenge of turning streams into an ongoing connection with an artist. “If someone listens to a track on Spotify, you can try and encourage them to follow the artist’s profile, but that’s a whole other sort of process that I’m […]
Company Name: Kobalt Location: London Salary: Competitive Apply Via: https://boards.greenhouse.io/kobaltmusicgroup/jobs/485757?gh_src=t6eilc1#.WCNSZ8nl9f0 Closing Date: November 30, 2016 We are thrilled to announce a unique opportunity to be an integral part of Kobalt – the leading technology-powered music services company! As the SVP of Royalties , you will be responsible for Kobalt’s global royalties collection, processing and distribution function across our Publishing and Label services. You will lead a large multi-disciplined teams across these departments to manage the workflow and processes as well as recommend and implement long term change programmes. The success of this role is defined by championing our commitment to bring transparency to our clients. This means taking our already efficient collection and processing of revenue to the next level. Royalty tracking will be a key challenge you will overcome but with a dedicated operations and technical team you have all the resource you need to do a great job. Naturally we would expect you to be well versed and putting the case for change to senior stakeholders and then able to manage the implementation of a large scale change programme. If you feel like the fast-paced, rewarding environment of our rapidly growing company is for you – share your story! Apply today and tell us why you are the next best addition to our successful team! For more information and to apply, follow the link below! https://boards.greenhouse.io/kobaltmusicgroup/jobs/485757?gh_src=t6eilc1#.WCNSZ8nl9f0 JOB SUMMARY Reporting to the COO, as a senior member of the operations management team, this role will take responsibility for Kobalt’s global royalties collection, processing and distribution function. You will lead teams, manage workflow and processes as well as recommend and implement long term improvement change programmes. The success of this role is defined by the efficient collection/processing of revenue and the timely delivery of accurate statements across Kobalt’s global […]
Kobalt Label Services has launched the first Apple TV official artist app. Specifically designed for the latest version of Apple TV, the app is for British rock band Placebo, who signed their catalogue for digital services to Kobalt in January. Since doing that deal, KLS has quietly dropped Placebo’s music on Spotify. The band were previously long-time holdouts on the service. Kobalt says it ‘will allow fans to experience their favourite music videos alongside the live videos and exclusive content from the Placebo archives in their very own home’. The app also commemorates the 20-year-anniversary of Placebo’s self-titled debut album in 2016. “We see this as a unique way of bringing Placebo’s catalogue into the homes of existing and potential fans” said Anthony Crook, Riverman Management. “The Placebo Apple TV app allows the viewer access to videos from throughout the band’s twenty year career, including all of the single promo videos, live shows, bonus behind the scenes footage and never before seen content. “The most important element for us moving forward is that the app offers the band a platform to premiere and monetise future visual content or releases, as the market for the traditional formats continues to decline.” Kobalt says it will work closely with Placebo to expand and add additional content into the app over time. “This new technology will present Placebo’s catalogue in an entirely new way, giving the fans something unique in a space controlled by the artist,” said Paul Hitchman, President of Kobalt Label Services. “When the release of the new Apple TV was made, and the fact that it would for the first time have an app store, we saw this as an opportunity to be first in this new space.“
Kobalt’s very own collection society , AMRA, has signed its first global digital licensing deal and it’s a biggy – Apple Music. The agreement, which covers the globe outside the US and Canada, will see AMRA collect royalties for songwriters and publishers direct from Apple for usage around the world. AMRA represents Kobalt and its clients, including over 500 independent publishing companies such as B*Unique, Communion, Polar Patrol and Chris Blackwell’s recently-signed Blue Mountain Music. Traditionally, digital music services like Apple Music have required separate deals with numerous CMOs on a territory-by-territory basis to license repertoire worldwide. Kobalt told MBW that its licence agreement with Apple Music was “the first of a set of new global deals concluded by AMRA”. You can bet Spotify, and very possibly YouTube, are also on that shopping list… Kobalt has invited other publishing rights-holders – including the majors – to join AMRA, arguing that it can do a more cost-efficient job of collection that non-for-profit territory-specific societies. “I am thrilled by AMRA’s unique ability to make direct streaming deals with the leading streaming players.” Willard Ahdritz, Kobalt Digital platforms can currently obtain a Europe-wide license for repertoire through the likes of as Solar and ARESA – a process which is set to become even easier with the new PRS/STIM/GEMA hub launching next year. However, licensing the rest of the world usually requires a vast number of agreements with organisations in a string of individual countries. In some of these territories, particularly within Latin America and Africa, obtaining all due royalties has proven no easy task for songwriters and publishers in the past. [ READ : ‘Kobalt: Major publishers should come and join our collection society’] Powered by its KORE collection technology, Kobalt claims that ‘AMRA is uniquely able to process the billions of […]