Universal Music Group has expanded its agreement with Amazon to include Twitch.
The deal is partly an extension of the two companies’ existing agreement for music streaming, including making more of the label’s catalogues available in HD, Ultra HD and spatial audio.
However, the two companies will also be deepening their relationship around merch, selling it within the Amazon Music app.
As for Twitch, a long-running hot potato of the music licensing landscape, Amazon’s live-video subsidiary will provide “commercial opportunities for UMG and its artists to engage directly with fans through its suite of products”.
That means artist and label-branded channels on Twitch plus “an exclusive series of artist features and experiences, in addition to other music-based content, specifically for the service”.
It’s interesting to see Amazon striking deals that span both Amazon Music and Twitch, although it is not surprising. The two services have been working more closely together in recent years, for example on integrating Twitch livestreams into the Amazon Music app.
Twitch has been making plenty of music moves, including in 2021 commissioning two reports on its impact for musicians (here and here); settling its long-running dispute with US music publishing body the NMPA; striking a deal with Warner Music Group; and launching a livestreaming music incubator scheme.
“Amazon Music and Twitch are excellent strategic collaborators, committed to creating the best and most diverse experiences for fans across streaming music, live streaming, artist collaborations, and physical merchandise,” said UMG’s EVP of digital strategy Michael Nash.