Clearly, the Nigerian music industry is desperately struggling with finding ways to convert the fame and attention in-demand artists get into quantifiable wealth. The preferred model for making money right now is live performances, through concerts and festivals, and because of problems like security, lack of venues and less than stellar payment options (prepaid ticketing), the concert route to making bank has only favoured a few, while leaving the majority scrambling for an opportunity to blow. Industry insiders agree that there needs to be more avenues through which revenue can be shared to artists, especially artists with small but loyal fanbases, and many labels have tried and failed, which is where we hope Replete Music will succeed.
Replete Music Publishing group, based in Lagos is behind the deal that is bringing Kobalt Music to Nigeria. Based in Lagos, Nigeria with a presence in South Africa and Kenya, replete is seeking to change how music is made and distributed by Nigerian artists. To that end, it is making moves towards consolidating the digital distribution channels for music. It has announced that it has signed a worldwide administration deal with Kobalt Music, a music and technology company built for artists, songwriters, publishers and labels as an alternative to the traditional music business model.
According to the Kobalt Music website, the independent publishing company works to help artists license their music internationally and helps them broker deals with streaming services and handles the legal copyright for royalties across multiple platforms. These are two regions that our industry is sorely lacking, especially when it comes to copyright. During the press conference to announce the partnership, the parties involved gave these statements.
“We are truly excited to join the Kobalt family, said Amy Oraefo, CEO of Replete Music Publishing. This deal sees the world’s largest independent publishing company partnering with a boutique publishing company whose focus is to promote songwriters of the African diaspora. We are committed to ensuring that our music creators’ best interests remain at the forefront. Our partnership with Kobalt will help take our creators’ content to the ears of the world so all can experience the vast amount of talent throughout the continent of Africa.”
When speaking of the partnership, Mulika Sannie, VP of Business Affairs at the Kobalt London office, stated, “There is so much talent and great music that comes out of Nigeria, so this is a fantastic opportunity to support Replete in ensuring its songwriters maximize their earnings not just domestically, but internationally also.”
Al McLean, Senior VP of Creative at the Kobalt Atlanta office, further commented on the partnership and stated, “I feel the continent of Africa is one of the hottest emerging markets in the world of music and partnering with such a visionary company like Replete is the future.”
We’ll be closely watching this union, and we really hope for the future of Nigerian music that it yields interesting results.