BMG extends GEMA licensing deal to 48 more territories

BMG extends GEMA licensing deal to 48 more territories

BMG has extended its long-term deal with German collection society GEMA to license digital services to another 48 territories and a potential total audience of 1.8 billion.

BMG already licenses Anglo-American repertoire to digital services through GEMA subsidiary ARESA in 38 European countries. To these it now adds dozens more, including Russia, Turkey, the Middle East and Africa. 

It has also committed to extend its relationship with GEMA to license through ARESA until 2021.

The ARESA structure optimises payments to BMG writers as well as simplifying licensing. ARESA licensees include Apple, Spotify, Amazon, Deezer, YouTube and Facebook.

Among the 1.6 million songwriters whose rights are represented by ARESA are Bruno Mars, Roger Waters, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, Quincy Jones, M.I.A., John Legend, Johnny Cash, Tears for Fears and Aphex Twin.

BMG CEO Hartwig Masuch said, “Ensuring songwriters get the money they deserve in the streaming age is a simple concept but an incredibly complicated process. We are delighted to extend our relationship with GEMA through ARESA to make sure BMG’s writers continue to receive a world-class service. Under our previous deal BMG already reached a potential 531 million music fans through ARESA, but this new extension of our relationship takes that to more than 1.8 billion."

Dr. Harald Heker, GEMA CEO, said: “For six years, GEMA has, together with BMG, been facilitating a transparent and efficient licensing process for Anglo-American music all over Europe. I am pleased that we continue this successful cooperation and now also expand it far beyond Europe's borders. We have a strong partner in BMG in order to meet the challenges of digital music licensing and to develop up-to-date licensing models.” 

BMG general counsel Ama Walton said, “Licensing digital services with GEMA through ARESA benefits our writers in terms of speed, efficiency and transparency. It also makes life easier for music users by providing a one-stop-shop for the mechanical rights of our Anglo-American writers.”

Dr. Kaspar Kunisch, MD, ARESA, said, “Digital music exploitation and the diversification of digital music services are fast-paced. In order to allow composers and lyricists to participate in the financial remuneration from the streaming and download sectors in the best possible way, we need flexible and innovative solutions. We are excited to support BMG to reach this objective together with our partner ICE.”

ICE, a joint venture by GEMA, PRS and STIM, takes over the processing of the usage notifications.

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