Soundcloud has announced it had struck a deal covering as many as 20,000 independent record labels through global digital rights agency, Merlin.
The agreement includes the world’s biggest independents, such as Beggars Group, Domino, Secretly Group, Epitaph, Ninja Tune, PIAS, Warp Records, Armada Music, Kontor Records (Bon Iver), and the electronic label Warp.
Merlin’s membership represents the most valuable set of rights outside of those controlled by the three major labels, commanding in excess of 10% of the global digital market.
Significantly, via this commercial partnership Merlin members now have access to a full range of reporting and content management tools and, by joining On SoundCloud, SoundCloud’s new creator partner programme, an opportunity to unlock new revenues - triggering monetisation of their own uploads to the SoundCloud platform, in addition to those posted by SoundCloud users.
The agreement will also cover involvement in SoundCloud’s forthcoming subscription service.
Soundcloud claims 175M monthly active users and an inventory of 100M tracks.
Charles Caldas, CEO of Merlin, said: “The independent label community has long embraced SoundCloud as an innovative marketing and discovery platform, and Merlin is pleased to partner with the service at the next stage of its evolution. Our deal significantly extends this existing relationship, and ensures Merlin members can participate fully in the long term value of SoundCloud's future.”
Alexander Ljung, SoundCloud’s founder & CEO, said: ”I’m excited to announce our largest independent label partnership to date with Merlin, the global rights agency for the independent label sector. Independent creators have always been at the core of SoundCloud and with this partnership we’re thrilled to extend new revenue generating opportunities to thousands of independent labels."