MAMA Group, Nettwerk Music Group and ATC announce the formation of artist investment business Polyphonic
Three of the world’s foremost artist management companies announced today a significant evolution in their engagement with the artist community.
MAMA Group, Nettwerk Music Group and ATC have announced the formation of Polyphonic, which will invest directly into artist businesses, thereby offering an alternative to the traditional label-driven investment model of the music industry.
Founded with an initial financial commitment of more than $20 million for its first year of operation (and with significant additional capital available thereafter), Polyphonic will seek to partner with artists and their management, providing the capital to enable them to operate their own businesses, retain their own copyrights and take a fair share of any profits that are generated.
Polyphonic, through a simple partnership governed by contract rather than corporate structure, will supply the investment required to enable an artist to build their business beyond the constraints of traditional business models. All copyrights will remain the property of the artist. Polyphonic will earn a share of the profits generated by all revenue earned from artist activities – in much the same way that artist’s managers currently earn profits.
Adam Driscoll, co-CEO of MAMA Group Plc commented:
“In recent times it has become apparent that there is a real barrier to artist development - and that is a lack of available investment capital. Through our SuperVision Management businesses, we have been making funds available to our clients to help them at the early stages of their careers for some time. The launch of Polyphonic will enable us to make many more such investments in both emerging artists and those further down their career path. This investment will not just apply to the artists that we manage, but also to artists that excite us who are not necessarily part of our management structure. The contract that we have structured brings more business and creative freedom to artists and managers than has ever been offered before.”
Brian Message, of ATC and Courtyard said:
“Polyphonic, an investment vehicle driven by alignment of interest rather than tax structuring or the maximising of any one particular revenue stream, is an important funding option for artists. More and more artists are directly engaging with their fans in a way that enhances that unique relationship and enables the artist to have much more say in the way in which their business is built. ATC and MAMA have co-invested in a number of new artists over the last 3 years and Polyphonic marks the next iteration of that business. Now, together with Nettwerk, we want to be working with a much bigger group of artists and managers and the capital we have available makes that achievable.
Terry McBride, CEO of Nettwerk added:
“Over the last few years we have found new ways to enable our management clients to take more control of their careers. We launched a number of artist imprints to allow bands to take a bigger stake in their recorded music and have engaged fully with digital distribution platforms to ensure that we get their music to their fans in as many ways as possible. Polyphonic will enable us to make further strides in enabling artists and managers to build businesses that control all aspects of the artists’ career and their assets. Having shared objectives is paramount if any business in any sector is to work. That hasn’t been readily delivered by the old industry investment model – it will be through Polyphonic”.
POLYPHONIC – having many voices, each with independence, but acting in harmony.
About MAMA Group
MAMA Group is the parent company of a diverse range of music and marketing businesses. The two key divisions are live music and artist services., In the live music sector the Group operates a number of leading UK venues through its Mean Fiddler Group joint venture with HMV Plc. These venues include the Hammersmith Apollo, The Forum, The Jazz Café, The Edinburgh Picture House, Heaven, G-A-Y and the Barfly chain. The artist services business is responsible for the direct management of over 40 musical artists and via MAMA’s stake in Nettwerk Music Group in North America, works with a further 60 artists from that territory. The Group has additional interests in publishing, recording, marketing, merchandising and sponsorship and is viewed as one of the UK’s leading independent music businesses.
ATC is the ‘new age’ music operation majority owned by the partners of Courtyard Management, the management operation of Radiohead and Supergrass. Managing, partnering and investing in over 20 artists, the roster includes The Boxer Rebellion, Chew Lips, Faithless, Hadouken, Kate Nash, Master Shortie and The Rifles,
About Nettwerk Music Group
Founded in August of 1984, Nettwerk Music Group is the umbrella company for Nettwerk Management and Nettwerk Records, as well as Nettwerk One, Nutone, and Artwerk. With over 120 employees, the Vancouver-based company has offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Boston, Nashville and Hamburg. The principles of Nettwerk are founders Terry McBride, Mark Jowett, Dan Fraser and Ric Arboit. Nettwerk Management handles the careers of such esteemed artists as Sarah McLachlan, Jars of Clay, Stereophonics, Hope Sandoval, Guster, Brand New, Chromeo, State Radio, Martha Wainwright and Sixpence None The Richer. Nettwerk's Producer Management arm also handles the careers of such sought after producers like Don Was, Howard Benson, Bob Clearmountain, Chris Lord-Alge and Tom Lord-Alge. As a record company Nettwerk has released over 200 full-length albums and sold over 100 million albums in our 25-year history. Artists on the roster include: Old Crow Medicine Show, The Weepies, Ladytron, BT, Delerium, fun., Great Lake Swimmers, The Submarines, and Datarock.