We catch up on this week’s music publishing news, from key deals and signings to new hires, legislation and more.
Deals & Acquisitions
Facebook Strikes Deals With Major Labels and Publishers to License Music on Its Gaming App (Billboard)
The deals give Facebook Gaming an edge over Twitch, which has yet to reach major-label music licensing agreements.
Warner Music Group’s Arts Music & Warner Chappell Music Partner With Skyship Entertainment’s Children’s Brand (Billboard)
In an expansion of its family content, Warner Music Group’s Arts Music division, along with Warner Chappell Music, have entered into a global partnership with Skyship Entertainment, creator of the Super Simple Songs children’s brand.
Sony/ATV partners with India’s Divo Music (Music Week)
Under their new partnership, Sony/ATV will provide publishing and administration services to Divo Music’s community of songwriters, composers and lyricists, delivering new opportunities on a global scale.
Vine Investment Firm Acquires Publishing Catalog of Songwriter Sean Douglas (Billboard)
For its inaugural deal in music, Vine acquired both Douglas’ writer’s share and co-publishing. Previously, Vine acquired film and television assets including Village Roadshow Entertainment Group and Lakeshore Entertainment.
NetEase Cloud Music and BMG launch strategic partnership (Music Week)
The new deal will provide BMG’s international artists and songwriters with access to a music streaming platform with over 800 million registered users. It follows a recent NetEase deal with Warner Chappell.
Reservoir signs EDM producer Nick Miller to worldwide publishing deal (MBW)
The deal includes global rights to Miller’s entire catalog of works including trilogy albums Ashes, Awake, and Ascend and new single Nightlight.
Voisey star Olivia Knight (aka poutyface) signs major deals (Music Ally)
Olivia Knight (aka ‘poutyface‘) has a label deal with Island Records and a publishing deal with Warner/Chappell, having also worked with Apple’s artist development subsidiary Platoon.
G Ricordi & Co, New York signs composers Michael Gordon, David Lang and Julia Wolfe (Music Week)
G Ricordi & Co, New York, a Universal Music Publishing Classical company, has announced an exclusive global publishing deal with American composers and Bang On A Can co-founders Michael Gordon, David Lang and Julia Wolfe.
Launches & New Ventures
Jonas Brothers’ Patriarch Launches Nashville-Based Music Publishing Company (Variety)
Jonas Group Entertainment (JGE), the company headed by Jonas Brothers patriarch Kevin Jonas, Sr. is expanding its operation with the launch of a Nashville-based publishing division, Jonas Group Publishing.
Finance & Investment
Music Publisher Kobalt to Explore a Potential Sale (Bloomberg)
The company, also one of the largest independent music businesses, could be valued at more than $1 billion, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private.
Spotify stock falls after Amazon adds podcasts to its music streaming service (CNBC)
Spotify shares fell 1.2% on Monday after Amazon announced it’s launching podcasts in its music streaming service.
Facts & Figures
‘A flood of money into music IP is about to change the music industry forever.’ (MBW)
In an interview in London, MBW asks Masuch about BMG’s streaming strategy, as well as what he thinks the music business will look like when the Covid-19 pandemic is finally, hopefully, a memory – rather than a day-to-day reality…
‘The health of the publishing industry is utterly dependent on there being a vibrant independent sector.’ (MBW)
Sarah Williams recaps her first year and half at IMPEL and explains what the independent organization is hoping to achieve for its members…
Trump’s TikTok takedown: App downloads will be blocked in US from this Sunday (MBW)
The US Department of Commerce has today (September 18) issued a statement announcing that, from Sunday (September 20), new downloads of Chinese owned-apps WeChat and TikTok will blocked on app stores in the US “to safeguard the national security of the United States”.
Judge Rules in Favor of Nicki Minaj in Tracy Chapman Copyright Dispute (Variety)
A judge handed a significant win to Nicki Minaj on Wednesday, finding that she did not commit copyright infringement when she created a song based on Tracy Chapman’s “Baby Can I Hold You.”
South Africa’s Top Lawyers Unnerved By Proposed Copyright Laws (Law.com)
There is major concern among South African law firms about the country’s controversial copyright amendment bills, which President Cyril Ramaphosa, has returned to Parliament for further consideration.
US Copyright Office Issues Two Interim Rules and One Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Related to the Music Modernization Act (U.S. Copyright Office)
Pursuant to the Musical Works Modernization Act, Title I of the Orrin G. Hatch–Bob Goodlatte Music Modernization Act (MMA), the Copyright Office has issued two interim rules and one notice of proposed rulemaking.
Royalties & CMOs
SACEM announces licensing deal with Twitch (CMU)
French song rights collecting society SACEM announced yesterday that it had entered into a licensing agreement with Amazon’s livestreaming platform Twitch.
Over 500000 tracks affected by YouTube music video block in Denmark (MBW)
YouTube is embroiled in a very public spat with songwriters and music publishers in Denmark, via local collection society Koda.
Coffee Shops, Clothing Stores & Beyond: How This Swedish Startup Is Boosting Background Music Paydays (Billboard)
Soundtrack Your Brand wants to get rights holders paid accurately for songs played at stores and restaurants. So far, the industry likes what it hears.
PRS for Music claims stream-ripping has grown ‘dramatically’ (Music Ally)
UK collecting society PRS for Music has published some research into the growth of ‘stream-ripping’ piracy: sites and tools that help people rip streams (e.g. from YouTube or Spotify) into downloads.