Music Week’s round-up of essential biz stories you might have missed...
Sony/ATV confirms Platt appointment
Jon Platt has been confirmed as the new CEO of Sony/ATV. The Warner/Chappell chairman/CEO will take over from Martin Bandier, who will be leaving Sony/ATV in March 2019. Kenichiro Yoshida, president & CEO, Sony Corporation, praised Bandier for taking the publisher to “new heights”. Of Platt’s appointment, he added: “Jon has attracted a wide range of new and established creative talent, while building a dynamic senior management team around the world.”
Tunecore makes senior tech hire
Tunecore has unveiled Neil Bhay as its new VP of technology. The digital distribution and publishing administration company said Bhay - who previously worked at Viacom - will focus on building technology solutions to benefit the roster of artists. “His expertise and unique engineering background will help us continue building the tools independent artists need to reach the highest level of success,” said Scott Ackerman, CEO of TuneCore. “In Neil’s new role, he will ensure that our artists are supported by a platform that prioritises their needs and careers through the most advanced technology.”
Apple completes Shazam acquisition
Apple has acquired music recognition app Shazam, following the deal’s clearance by EU competition regulators. The tech giant confirmed plans to make the app ad-free for all users. It has so far been downloaded a billion times and users identify songs 20 million times a day. “Apple and Shazam have a long history together. Shazam was one of the first apps available when we launched the App Store and has become a favorite app for music fans everywhere,” said Oliver Schusser, Apple’s vice president of Apple Music. “With a shared love of music and innovation, we are thrilled to bring our teams together to provide users even more great ways to discover, experience and enjoy music.”
Amazon Music launches premium service in Canada
Amazon Music Unlimited has expanded to Canada, following the previously launched Prime Music. “We’ve seen such a positive customer response from the launch of Prime Music for Canada last year, and with today’s launch we’re excited to bring more customers even more choice and ways of discovering music with Alexa,” stated Sean McMullan, head of international expansion for Amazon Music. The service is now in more than 40 countries. Amazon Music has also made its UK Rising playlist a global platform. Joseph J Jones, who appeared at the Music Week Tech Summit, has the current first position on the playlist with his cover of Lorde’s Liability.
Soundcloud added to OCC charts
Soundcloud streams of licensed, monetised tracks now count toward the UK’s and Ireland’s official charts. “Soundcloud is the foundational music platform for creators and we are committed to empowering them with the best tools and services to grow their careers,” said Raoul Chatterjee, director, content partnerships. “Charts are a great measure of success for creators, and we’re excited their Soundcloud streams will now count toward the UK and Ireland’s Official Charts.”
Reservoir rap signing
Reservoir has announced the signing of rapper and songwriter Destin Route, previously known as J.I.D, to a worldwide publishing deal. The deal includes global rights to the his entire catalogue, including the J. Cole-executive-produced debut studio album, The Never Story, and his forthcoming LP, DiCaprio 2. “I’ve been a die-hard J.I.D fan since I first heard The Never Story,” said Reservoir SVP of creative and A&R, Spek. “I’ve known for a long time that he’s one to watch and I’m not surprised that the industry is finally taking notice. I couldn’t be more pleased to welcome him to the Reservoir family.”
Lyndsey de Paul prize winner
PRS Foundation and PRS for Music Members Benevolent Fund have revealed that latest recipient of the career-developing Lynsey de Paul Prize for emerging female solo music creators. Hackney-based soul singer-songwriter Amahla will receive a £2,500 development bursary, while five runners-up each get £1,200 towards their career.
PPL renews Vanderquest partnership
PPL and its sister company VPL have signed a new agreement with post-production house Vanderquest. A three-year agreement has been reached between all three companies that will see Vanderquest, which has been specialising in the music and broadcast industries for over 30 years, continue to manage the PPL Video Store. Vanderquest has one of the largest music video archives globally with over 50,000 videos, all of which are stored and made available digitally with registered users able to search, view and source clips online.
Vevo appoints SVP of research
Bryon Schafer has joined Vevo to head up the company’s research organisation. Schafer joins as SVP of research, and will be based in LA. He will lead Vevo’s efforts in audience and advertiser research, as well as consumer and artist insights. Vevo CEO Alan Price said: “He is a highly respected and analytical executive, with extensive digital media experience, whose insight and analysis will help drive the value of the music video.”