New beginnings for the IPRS with Kobalt coming on board as the first International Publisher

New Delhi: The Indian Performing Right Society Limited (IPRS), the only copyright society in India, representing the authors, composers, and publishers of music, has announced its association with international music publisher Kobalt. IPRS will administer both the performing and mechanical rights of the international catalogues signed to it, which means that all rights licensed to audio streaming services, FM and AM radio and public performance can be licensed in totality. For synchronization licenses to television and OTT audio-visual platforms, the publishers will continue to issue licenses while the users will get the mechanical and performing licenses from IPRS.

Kobalt Music Publishing Limited represents over 25,000 songwriters, 600 publishers, and 20,000 independent artists like Dua Lipa, The Weekend, Marshmello, Diplo, Childish Gambino, Dave Grohl, the Foo Fighters, Enrique Iglesias, Lauv, Pitbull and Lewis Capaldi as well as legends like Paul Mc. Cartney, Elvis Presley, Bob Marley, Stevie Nicks, and Max Martin.

Three standalone international music publishers, Kobalt Music Publishing Limited, Fairwood Music Group, and Konic Records entered the Indian market via sub-publishing agreements with Turnkey Music & Publishing Pvt. Ltd. in 2020. Kobalt is the first international publisher to sign with IPRS since its re-admittance into the International Confederation of Authors and Composers Societies (CISAC) as a full member in Dec.2018. CISAC is the apex body of 232 Authors’ Societies in 121 countries representing more than 4Mn creators.

Once the other international publishers are on board, IPRS can close deals with platforms that have been unable to license international publishing so far. It is a great benefit to the user to be able to come under a single license instead of having to approach multiple publishers for licenses and possibly having to negotiate rates each time.

Speaking on the development, Mr. Atul Churamani, Managing Director, Turnkey Music & Publishing Pvt. Ltd., which represents Kobalt’s catalogue in India, said, “This has taken a long time coming and we are delighted that finally the IPRS is administering the international works we represent for India. You can’t be a publisher of foreign works in any county and not be a part of the performing rights society. This association will open up revenue streams for the Kobalt, Fairwood and other catalogues that we represent.”

Mr. Rakesh Nigam, CEO of IPRS, said, “We are very glad to have an international publisher like Kobalt onboard. With international publishers joining us it would help us enhance the valuation for all the stakeholders, including them. The streaming platforms have witnessed an upsurge in the consumption of international content. With associations similar to the one we have entered into with Kobalt, IPRS will now be able to derive the desired value for the international works in India as so far we haven’t been licensed to do so” he further added “We are open for negotiations with publishers to suit the needs. IPRS would like to sit across the table, come to an agreement and then make the necessary adjustments or changes as required.”

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