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TikTok and UMG pen deal to create innovative experiences and better compensate artists

Tyrone Stewart


TikTok has expanded an existing agreement with Universal Music Group (UMG), putting in the place the foundations for the companies to collaborate on innovative experiences and bring equitable compensation to recording artists and songwriters.

The pair will look to develop experiences which focus on expression and connect music artists to their fans around the world, though it’s not yet clear how they will do this.

What we know for sure is that the deal, which covers record music from artists at UMG’s labels and songwriters with Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG), will mean that artists are more fairly rewarded for the use of their songs on the video-sharing app. And TikTok users will now have access to UMG’s full catalogue of music.

“We are excited to enter this new era with UMG and UMPG to continue supporting artists and songwriters, by working together to help reach music fans on TikTok,” said Ole Obermann, Global Head of Music at TikTok. “Our platform has been a driver in creating chart hits and licensing the world's biggest catalogue of tracks will continue to inspire our community. In turn, we are proud to partner with UMG and UMPG to be a source to help new talent emerge and to re-introduce legacy acts to a new audience.”

Michael Nash, UMG’S EVP of Digital Strategy, added, “UMG and TikTok will now work more closely than ever to promote ambitious experimentation, innovation and collaboration — with the shared objective of developing new music experiences and features. Driving new and deeper connections with fans, this agreement delivers equitable compensation to our recording artists and songwriters, as well as a commitment to develop industry-leading tools, A&R insights and models necessary to advance their careers.”