The Music Managers Forum (MMF) has announced a number of team changes.
As it aims to enhance its support for the professional development of an expanded community of over 1,200 UK-based music managers, the organisation has promoted Paul Bonham to the role of professional development director.
Having overseen the success of the Accelerator programme for music managers, Bonham will also focus on expanding and redefining the MMF’s training and development services.
Working closely with the MMF’s associate members, as well as existing partners including Women In CTRL, The Playmaker Group and The Hub, this will involve surveying members’ developmental needs and creating bespoke learning opportunities, with the goal of empowering music management businesses to reach their full commercial potential.
Bonham will be supported in this remit by a new education & engagement manager, who will also lead education partnerships with universities and colleges.
This announcement follows the MMF’s recent hire of Anneliese Harmon as the organisation’s general manager. Harmon has global expertise in artist management, strategic business development and international music marketing. She ran her own music management/consultancy business and has worked in the past with V2 Music, Dallas Austin and Def Jam, among others.
Anneliese Harmon is responsible for increasing the MMF’s effectiveness by creating and communicating the organisation's strategy. She is focused on identifying new opportunities to maximise value for MMF members, while also growing commercial partnerships. As GM, she leads on MMF spotlight projects including mental health, digital burnout, bullying, harassment and discrimination initiatives and is focused on widening the lane of objectives met by MMF Unite.
Annabella Coldrick, chief executive, MMF, said: “In what is a highly fragmented music business, where artists are being empowered to build their own unique pathways, the role of the music manager has never been so crucial - or so demanding. The rapid expansion of the MMF’s membership, which has more than doubled in recent years, is testament to these changes and there is a real need to provide both the current and upcoming generation of music managers with highly targeted business support.
“With the range of partners we already work with, I believe the MMF is well placed to further provide these services, and by increasing our resources and utilising the expertise of Paul and Anneliese we are now in a position to build on the successes of Accelerator and our other in-house training programmes and help even more UK-based managers to professionalise their businesses and thrive.”
The role of the music manager has never been so crucial - or so demanding
Paul Bonham, professional development director, MMF, said: “Even before the pandemic, the role played by music managers within the industry was becoming increasingly important - whether as investors, or in key areas like artist development. From my experience on the Accelerator Programme, where we work with some of the UK’s most talented independent managers, I have also seen first-hand the benefits of continuous learning, where managers from different backgrounds can share knowledge and expand their skills and networks. The impacts have been astonishing.
“For these reasons, I am really excited that we can now take these learnings and apply them far more widely, helping the MMF to better serve our incredibly diverse membership and enabling them to support the careers of artists, songwriters, producers and DJs.”
Anneliese Harmon, MMF GM, added: “I’m delighted to be a central part of the MMF’s groundbreaking, passionate and influential team at such a pivotal and exciting time in the music industry. Music managers have come through two of the most challenging years ever, and the input, guidance and support the MMF has given and continues to give is incredible. As we embark on our 30th year, we will continue to innovate, educate, advocate and - dare I say - disturb, in a positive, strategic and progressive way.”
In his first public engagement since his promotion, Paul will be speaking at The Great Escape’s Music + Education Strand on Wednesday, May 11.
The MMF has also confirmed Manasvi Dethekar as its new membership secretary, and Shanice Jones, who joins as membership assistant from Small Green Shoots.
Karmal Waters and Oliver Finch, who interned with the MMF as part of CC Skill’s Creative Kickstart Scheme, have since graduated to permanent roles at Equiano Rum and Double Six Rights Management / Domino Recording Company.
PHOTO: (L-R) Annabella Coldrick, Adam Webb, Manasvi Dethekar, Paul Bonham, Anneliese Harmon, Shanice Jones.