Warner Music Group has made its latest move in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, with a planned acquisition of distributor Qanawat Music. The deal isn’t completed yet (WMG said “soon” in its announcement) but would see the major label taking over a distributor that operates in more than 20 countries across the region, as well as handling brand partnerships and music publishing administration.

WMG is buying the company from mobile firm Qanawat, whose founder Adnan Al-Obthani will remain CEO of Qanawat Music once the deal goes through. In keeping with other recent acquisitions by major labels in high-potential markets, WMG sees this as a route to finding more artists to break globally.

“With this new deal, we have a massive opportunity to export exciting talent from the Middle East and North Africa – there is an important and growing Arabic diaspora worldwide that we can tap into and which will help amplify the music,” said WMG’s president, emerging markets, recorded music Alfonso Perez-Soto.

The deal follows WMG’s investment in MENA-based label Rotana Music in February 2021.

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