Sandbox Issue 208: Making Micro Waves
Lead: In an age of constant digital distractions, sometimes it is better to play the short game. We trace the rise of the micro ad and how it is being tailored to stand out when users are rapidly hopping and grazing across...
July 11, 2018
Kobalt revenues and losses both increased in last fiscal year
Music firm Kobalt’s latest financial results show that its revenues grew by 23.5% to $321m in its last fiscal year, which ended on 30 June 2017. However, the group’s operating loss grew by 45.6% to $24.3m, while its...
April 3, 2018
Smart speakers’ impact on music: ‘I don’t think it can be overhyped…’
More than 26m smart speakers were shipped globally in 2017 according to research firm Futuresource, with the Amazon Echo and Google Home ranges proving popular devices. That was the spur for an event hosted by British...
March 21, 2018
Kobalt promises $150m investment for AWAL recordings business
Kobalt is making AWAL the brand for its entire recordings division, while promising to invest $150m and hire 100 more staff to build up that side of the business. Kobalt acquired digital distributor AWAL in 2012, as it...
March 8, 2018
Case study: marketing Laura Marling’s Semper Femina album
Laura Marling’s last album, ‘Semper Femina’, is a wonderful piece of work: something I’ve returned to again and again since its release, discovering new details every time. Hats off to that, then. But also to the...
February 8, 2018
Kobalt CEO blasts ‘elitist’ concerns about music as background listening
Kobalt CEO Willard Ahdritz delights in ruffling feathers within the music industry, so his appearance as a keynote speaker at Music Biz and Music Ally's NY:LON Connect conference in New York promised to deliver a fair few...
January 24, 2018
Facebook signs music deals for Irving Azoff’s GMR, Kobalt and indie publishers
Facebook's latest music-licensing deal, following its agreements with Universal Music Group and Sony/ATV, is something a corker: it's with Irving Azoff's Global Music Rights. That would be the Irving Azoff who's regularly...
January 11, 2018
Kobalt Recordings gets a new boss: Lonny Olinick
Last year, former Kobalt Music Group president Richard Sanders joined Tidal as its new CEO. Now Kobalt has moved to replace him at the summit of its recorded-music division. Lonny Olinick is the new CEO of Kobalt Recordings,...
January 9, 2018
Kobalt’s second music-royalties fund reaches $600m capacity
Kobalt has announced its second managed fund to invest in music copyrights, with a capacity of $600m thanks to $345m of equity commitments plus debt. It follows the company’s first music-royalties fund, which invested...
November 7, 2017
Kobalt Series D funding swells to $89m as Section 32 chips in
In May, music company Kobalt announced a $75m Series D funding round, led by media firm Hearst Entertainment. Now that round has increased to $89m. The $14m ‘second installment’ was led by former Google Ventures partner...
October 12, 2017
Digital marketing lessons from WMG, Kobalt and Lounge Books
Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit conference in London yesterday included three short’n’sharp sessions where digital marketers outlined the lessons they learned from recent campaigns. Warner Music Group’s senior VP of...
October 12, 2017
Should the charts measure ‘engaged’ streams not playlists?
There has been plenty of chatter this month in the UK about a tweak to the official singles chart’s methodology, aimed at preventing another Sheeran-style takeover of the upper reaches. One of the latest responses came...
July 3, 2017