Welcome to the weekly Music Business Worldwide roundup, where we made sure you captured the top five stories to make our headlines over the past seven days. The MBW summary is supported by Centtrip, which helps more than 500 of the world’s best-selling artists maximize their income and reduce their touring costs.
Scooter Braun sold its Ithaca Holdings to HYBE, the home of South Korea-based BTS, in a $ 1 billion deal in April.
This week we discovered that as a result of that agreement, Braun has obtained a new corporate position, as co-CEO of HYBE America. His fellow co-CEO wants to be a longtime HYBE / Big Hit frontman Lenzo Yoon.
A HYBE press release clarified that Yoon “will take the lead in localizing the K-pop business model in the US music industry overseeing the entire process from training, production, marketing, etc.” These responsibilities will include overseeing HYBE’s contributions to the joint venture label that the company is launching with Universal Music Group in the United States.
Instead, Braun, says HYBE, “will take over HYBE’s business operations in the United States to establish a strong foundation and enhance HYBE’s competitiveness, while continuing to lead Ithaca Holdings.”
All of this came to light amid the announcement yesterday (July 1) that HYBE’s legendary leader Bang Si-hyuk will be stepping down as the company’s global CEO. Park Ji-won will replace him in the position, although Bang will remain chairman of the company’s board of directors.
In a relatively quiet week for the music business, the past few days have also seen a major announcement from Kobalt Music Group.
Kobalt, which recently sold AWAL and Kobalt Neighboring Rights to Sony Music in a $ 430 million deal, says its current financial year, which ended this Wednesday (June 30), was profitable.
Elsewhere this week, Tencent increased its investment in Gaana, rival to India-based Spotify, through additional debt financing.
Read on to rediscover the biggest music industry stories of the past five days …
1) Bang Si-hyuk steps down as CEO of HYBE, and there’s a new job for Scooter Braun
Bang Si-hyuk will be stepping down from his role as CEO of HYBE (formerly Big Hit Entertainment) as part of a major leadership shakeup at the company behind K-pop megastars BTS.
HYBE’s new CEO has been named Park Ji-won, who joined the company in May last year. He will now oversee HYBE’s overall management strategy and operations.
HYBE’s US operations will be led by HYBE America CEO (Lenzo), Yoon Seok-jun and Scooter Braun (CEO), respectively.
2) COBALT: WE ARE PROFITABLE
Kobalt Music Group says it has just fulfilled its plan to become a profitable company.
We don’t know precisely as still profitable, but the firm has confirmed to MBW that it has published annual financial returns for its fiscal year FY2021, which ended this week (June 30).
The news came when MBW got our hands on Kobalt’s financial results for the previous fiscal year, that is, the 12 months ending June 30, 2020.
3) Tencent increases investment in Spotify rival Gaana
Tencent Holdings already owned more than a third of India-based Spotify’s rival Gaana, now it looks like it will increase that stake.
This is because Gaana, majority owned by Times Internet, just raised an additional $ 40 million in debt financing from Tencent’s China-based European entity, Tencent Cloud Europe B V.
According to Enter, Gaana has disclosed in a new regulatory filing that it has raised INR 2.94 billion (approximately $ 40 million) from Tencent by issuing 47,050 Series C optionally convertible bonds (OCD) at an issue price of INR 62,397.53 ($ 850) per share.
4) NLE Choppa sued for alleged copyright infringement
American rap star NLE Choppa (real name Bryson Potts) has been sued for copyright infringement on his track. Make em say, released in August 2020 and taken from their album Top Shotta.
Atlanta rapper Kilo Ali, also known as Andrell Rodgers, alleges that the vocal chorus of his own song, Love in your mouth was ripped off to create the melody at NLE Choppa’s Make Em say.
Warner Music Group, Norva Denton (Senior Vice President of A&R for Warner Records), NLE Choppa Entertainment, Alien Records, their Vice President Ron Cabiltes and various others they are also named as defendants in the lawsuit.
5) RESERVOIR ACQUIRES TOM WERMAN’S CATALOG
Reservoir, the New York-based music rights company, has acquired the producer catalog from legendary rock producer Tom Werman.
The deal includes 100% of Werman’s producer rights to all of his works, including the # 1 Billboard Hot 100 hit. Every Rose Has Its Thorn by Poison.
Today’s news follows Reservoir’s recent acquisition of American record label and music publisher Tommy Boy Music LLC in a deal valued at approximately $ 100 million.