IMPALA has elected a new board for a term of two years.
Sixteen new representatives are already confirmed to join the governing body of the association.
In line with IMPALA's ongoing work on diversity and inclusion, a new programme is being launched for free membership combined with board tenures for local labels.
All national associations will select a member company to share their board position for two years, while also enjoying full access to IMPALA membership benefits during the term. The new Irish association of independent record labels AIM Ireland has joined the board.
Label members of IMPALA will also be joined by a second representative from their company, to help bring young executives on board and contribute new ideas to the association.
The programme will roll out during the year. The board also selected Everlasting Records CEO Mark Kitcatt as president. Kees van Weijen, who stepped down, will continue both as IMPALA board member and as president of Dutch indie association STOMP.
Francesca Trainini of Italian national association PMI was re-elected as chair of IMPALA. Geert De Blaere, representing Belgian association BIMA, will continue his mandate as treasurer of the association, with Helen Smith confirmed as executive chair.
Merlin CEO Jeremy Sirota gave a keynote at the AGM, focussing on the importance of the digital market for independents. The AGM was also the opportunity for IMPALA members to review the priorities of the association in the coming years.
New IMPALA president Mark Kitcatt, of Everlasting Records, said: “My priority will be to continue the work we have started with our ten-point streaming plan. We want to ensure diversity in streaming and support reform that boosts our artists. This is a hot topic and we believe our proposals provide real change.”
New IMPALA member Laura Littauer, of Sundance Records, added: “The new programme to boost diversity on the IMPALA board is a great initiative and I’m really pleased to be one of the first labels to benefit. It’s a unique opportunity to participate in European decision-making alongside DUP, my national association in Denmark.”
Jeremy Sirota, CEO Merlin, added: “IMPALA has provided unbelievable support this year to independents around the world, including new initiatives such as their ten-point streaming plan and One Step Ahead program. Thank you to IMPALA team for inviting me to speak today and exchange ideas with the incredible music companies and associations that form IMPALA.”
Executive chair Helen Smith concluded: “We are all set for the next two years and we look forward to welcoming more participants at our meetings. Alongside artist remuneration, and diversity work, our members prioritised touring, copyright, maximising EU performance monies for performers and labels, carbon literacy and other key issues.”