Utopia Music CEO Markku Mäkeläinen exits following restructure

Utopia Music CEO Markku Mäkeläinen exits following restructure

Utopia Music CEO Markku Mäkeläinen has exited the company following a restructure.

The music technology company has also made several promotions to its management team. 

In December 2022, the Swiss firm was reorganised into two divisions, Music Services and Royalty Platform, with plans for a 20% reduction in staffing costs. The aim was to streamline operations following the 15 acquisitions made by Utopia, and ultimately achieve profitability and sustainable growth.

The Music Services division includes acquired companies Absolute, Proper and Sentric, and continues to be led by its CEO Roberto Neri.

Following the departure of Mäkeläinen, who oversaw the Royalty division, Utopia's executive chairman and founder Mattias Hjelmstedt will take on additional operational responsibilities to support the organisation and the leadership team. 

Mattias Hjelmstedt said: “The changes to our leadership team mark an exciting next step in Utopia's journey. This group of highly talented people bring unparalleled experience building and scaling companies – many of them have worked alongside me and Thomas [Gullberg, co-founder] for years, helping to realise Utopia’s mission of Fair Pay for Every Play.

“With continued strong support from our shareholders, Utopia is now optimising for the future. We have a solid team. We are faster, leaner and hyper-focused on delivering value to our customers and partners. We owe it to the music industry to get this right.”

Utopia’s new leaders will manage Utopia’s Royalty Platform division, which includes the company’s data operations, copyright and royalty processing and financial services.

Mattias Hjelmstedt will assume overall leadership of Utopia until a new CEO has been appointed. He will be supported by executive board member Wolfgang Streit on structural matters including investor relations, capital markets, compliance and M&A. 

Co-founder Thomas Gullberg will continue his role as a board member, while also overseeing Utopia’s brand and marketing

Tuva Palm has been appointed as executive board director, from her current role as VP of M&A, to support Hjelmstedt and the leadership team in product and tech matters while overseeing Utopia’s communications and public relations strategy. 

Utopia’s chief architect Max Flach will lead the tech organisation, including engineering, data and IT. He was one of the original architects of the Utopia platform. 

Tommy Fransson will lead Utopia’s commercial department, including sales, product, royalty processing and financial services. 

Greger Hagelin will lead business development at Utopia. He was Utopia’s third employee.

Tonio Bahner is Utopia’s new head of corporate services, responsible for HR, legal and compliance. 


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