Friday, 17 July 2015

Caller Tunes: MTN and Glo pay musicians 9bn Naira

The two biggest mobile telecommunication
operators in the country, MTN Nigeria and
Globacom, generated over N9bn for the local
music industry in 2014 through the monetisation
of caller tunes.
While MTN generated over N5bn for the Nigerian
musical artistes who sell their contents as caller
tunes on its platform, Globacom is said to have
brought in about N4bn.
The money generated for the industry was in
form of royalties paid to music artistes who
served or are still serving as brand ambassadors
to the two telecoms companies in the year.
The Glo music ambassadors, whose contracts
were recently renewed, are Nigeria’s leading
music stars, Peter and Paul Okoye (PSquare),
Oladapo Oyebanjo (D’Banj), Chinedu Okoli
(Flavour), Jude Abaga (M. I.), Oluwatobi Ojosipe
(Wande Coal), Omawumi Megbele, Bez Idakula,
Burna Ogulu (Burna Boy), Ego Ogbaro and
Sammie Okposo.
Globacom also signed on hip hop sensation,
Ayodeji Balogun, popularly known as Wizkid,
after he terminated his contract with MTN. It
also signed on the Mavin crew of Koredo Bello,
Reekado Banks and Hadizah Blell (Di’ja).
However, the leader of the Mavin Group, Michael
Ajereh (Don Jazzy) leads other music artistes on
the MTN network. He is joined by Tiwa Savage,
Sidney Esiri (Dr. Sid), Olanrewaju Fasasi (Sound
Sultan), Iyanya Mbuk, Chidinma Ekile, Bankole
Williams (Banky W), Kingsley Okonkwo (KCee)
and David Adeleke (Davido).
MTN also recently signed on the visually
impaired music artiste and producer, Cobhams
Asuquo.
Our correspondent obtained the figures from the
telecommunications companies on Wednesday,
amid plans to announce an on-demand music
service.
An employee in the Corporate Affairs Division of
Globacom, who pleaded anonymity, said that
apart from paying “about N4bn in form of
royalties to Glo music ambassadors, Glo plans to
lead the music streaming business in the future,
which valuation is estimated to be about $8.5bn
(N1.7tn).”
He said Globacom’s interest in the music
streaming business might be due to the decline
in digital download business, adding, “The
streaming business is projected to grow at
almost 40 per cent annually and will probably be
over $2bn (N393bn) business in 2016.”
It was gathered that the new and rising stream
of revenue for the telecoms firms might have
accounted for the recent scramble for top music
artistes in the country by both Globacom and
MTN.
While MTN declined to renew the contracts of
some of its music brand ambassadors last
month, Globacom quickly poached them with
higher bids.
However, aside the over N5bn generated for the
music industry, MTN said the brand
ambassadorship, appearances and performances
fees made for the artistes amounted to over
N500m.
“MTN has invested more than N1bn in talent
discovery and development through the Project
Fame sponsorship platform,” the company’s
General Manager, Corporate Affairs, Miss Funmi
Onajide, said.


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