Following Awal’s acquisition by Sony Music, rival independent distributors are having their say on what it all means – and some of them are worried.

Absolute Label Services boss Henry Semmence wrote an op-ed for MBW explaining why the deal is not “music to Absolute’s ears” as some people might expect. “Make no mistake, the continued consolidation of our competitors is not good news – not for a growing class of independent artists and labels, or for the independent sector as a whole,” wrote Semmence. “Indies in many other territories around the world will feel the same: dilution of the independent voice will not benefit any of us in the long term… Every time one of the major conglomerates swallows an indie, it is accompanied by a press release giving assurances that ‘nothing will change’ for the company or those that it serves. But we all know the reality. In this business, there is no such thing as an independent within a major.”

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Stuart Dredge

Music Ally's Head of Insight

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