US-based Warner Music to acquire ME’s leading distributor Qanawat Music

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Official Reporter
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American multinational entertainment and record label conglomerate Warner Music Group has entered into an agreement in order to acquire Qanawat Music, a leading music distributor in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

According to the statement, the deal will see Warner Music significantly expand its presence across the region, with Qanawat Music becoming the company’s key local distributor and a source of upstreaming opportunities.

Qanawat Music was a division of Qanawat, a leading regional digital mobile solutions provider in the MENA region. The company was founded by Adnan Al-Obthani, who will remain CEO of Qanawat Music following the acquisition, while also continuing to work for Qanawat. The Qanawat Music will operate as a standalone company under the Warner Music Group umbrella.

Adnan Al-Obthani
Adnan Al-Obthani
CEO – Qanawat Music

“Warner Music has a long-term vision for developing the market here in the Middle East and North Africa, as well as a commitment to connect Arabic artists with a global fanbase. We’ve built this business up over 20 years and were determined that we would only partner with a company that we could confidently trust to look after our artists’ best interests.  This will be a new chapter for Qanawat Music and we couldn’t be more excited.”

Mr. Alfonso Perez-Soto, President, Emerging Markets, Recorded Music, WMG said that, “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.”

“This deal will shine a spotlight on the music industry in the Middle East and North Africa.  It is also the latest example of Warner Music Group’s long-term commitment to the region, with many more developments in the pipeline,” commented Mr. Moe Hamzeh, Managing Director, Warner Music Middle East.

Last year, Warner Music completed its investment in Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal’s Rotana Music, the largest record label in the Middle East region.

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