Here’s another story to chew on in the ‘how do music distributors evolve in the modern music industry?’ discussions. Believe Digital has bought a majority stake in German metal label Nuclear Blast, with MBW claiming the company paid “an eight-figure sum” for the stake. It follows Believe’s recent investment in a 49% stake in French independent label Tôt ou Tard. The new deal will bring artists including Slayer, Sabaton, Nightwish and Lamb of God into Believe’s network.

“We have known for a long time that we needed to respond to the changes in the music industry. We are also aware that we need to move away from the idea of conventional collaborations in order to continue to be a world-class force, especially in the digital market,” said Nuclear Blast CEO Markus Staiger. “We have found the ideal partner with Believe Digital to lead Nuclear Blast and its artists into the future.” As MBW notes, fellow German rock/metal label Century Media was acquired by Sony Music back in 2015. Metal may still feel like an under-served genre on the big streaming services, but these acquisitions are a reminder of the value that exists in its key labels’ catalogues – and the passion of their artists’ fans.

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