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Kobalt Boosts AWAL With $150M Investment


AWAL to Invest $150 Million Into Artists and Independent Labels, Hire Another 100 Employees, and Introduce New Lineup of Tech Products at SXSW 2018

Kobalt Also Combines All Recording Business Under AWAL 

Kobalt today announced it has significantly boosted AWAL’s resources to drive the transformation of the recording industry. AWAL’s commitment to helping artists and independent labels includes investing $150 million into building artists’ careers, hiring another 100 AWAL employees to better serve its growing roster of artists, and introducing a lineup of new technology products at this year’s SXSW.

Kobalt also announced it is combining all of its recording business under the AWAL brand.

The newly combined AWAL will serve thousands of emerging and established artists with a range of product and service offerings — from digital distribution, music-data insights, and funding, to global marketing, A&R, and promotion.  

“We’re leveling the playing field,” said Kobalt Music Founder & CEO, Willard Ahdritz. “For too long, artists have had to go through the gatekeepers to make a living out of music. Today, artists can build a career without the hangover of a traditional label deal. Hundreds of artists on AWAL are making over $50,000 a year and many earn in the millions without signing away their rights. We are also helping dozens of other independent labels do the same for their artists.” 

Enabler of a Growing Class of Artists

Kobalt and AWAL’s recording teams have demonstrated that artists can both stay independent and build a global, successful career in today’s new music industry. AWAL artists Lauv, Bruno Major, Tom Misch, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, R3HAB,The Wombats, VÉRITÉ, and many more have all had career-defining success as independent artists while retaining their music rights. 

“There are thousands of artists with real potential today who are lacking a true global partner with the capacity for funding, A&R, music data insights, promotion, distribution, and marketing support,” said AWAL CEO, Lonny Olinick. “To be able to help all of these artists, you need to understand what level of support and capital artists need at what stage in their career — so they can continue to rise. Through our tech platform and global team with deep industry experience across the globe, AWAL is in a unique position to support both the rising stars and global superstars.”

Further Investment in Technology for Artists and Independent Labels

Over the past year, AWAL has continued to deliver new products and services on top of Kobalt’s global multi-rights platform, which accounts for the billions of daily microtransactions in today’s music industry.

In 2017, AWAL launched its mobile app to provide a unique lens into an artist’s streaming and financial performance across Apple Music and Spotify. Since launch, the AWAL App has also added real-time access to YouTube videos with a detailed view of how an artist’s music is used and monetized across user-generated content.

“The AWAL App is the only app that gives a detailed view into an artist’s music, finances, and audience across the three largest music services,” said Olinick. 

Today, the company also announced a new update to the AWAL App with enhanced financial data, along with a separate new music analytics platform, which will both be shown at this year’s SXSW:

  • Enhanced AWAL App Financials – The AWAL App will now include detailed royalty income broken down by artist, track, streaming service, country, and more. AWAL members will be able to compare their financials across Apple Music, Spotify and YouTube.
  • AWAL Analytics – The AWAL Analytics platform provides a deeper dive into an artist’s data analytics across Apple Music and Spotify. Artists, managers, and independent labels will have a comprehensive window to see the impact of their music, helping them make smarter business decisions.

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