Epidemic Sound plans US push under former Spotify exec


Swedish music company Epidemic Sound is planning a new push in North America, under the leadership of Kate Vale, who’s just been appointed as the company’s managing director of North America. Vale was previously Google’s first employee in Australia and New Zealand; YouTube’s regional boss for the region; and most recently MD for Australia and New Zealand at Spotify, leaving that role in May 2017. She has also advised AI DJ-ing startup Muru Music for the last two years, among other advisory and board-level positions.

Epidemic Sound says that Vale will be responsible for driving the company’s expansion in the US, a few months after it raised a $20m funding round valuing the firm at $370m.

Epidemic Sound originally built its business in production music, including being one of the first libraries to target YouTubers as customers. In recent years, it has explored releasing its music commercially on streaming services, which in 2017 saw the company embroiled in the ‘fake artists’ industry controversy. Epidemic always argued that the term was offensive, given that the artists in question were simply production-musicians working under pseudonyms.

“We’re thrilled Kate has joined the Epidemic team. We knew straight away she was the right person for the role given her track record of taking individual markets from zero to hundreds of employees, scaling companies into the thousands worldwide,” said CEO Oscar Höglund on this week’s news.

Written by: Stuart Dredge