Industry insiders optimistic about deal between Tencent Music and Apple Music, predict more opportunities for Chinese musicians
Published: Nov 11, 2021 11:43 AM
QQ Music. Photo: VCG

QQ Music. Photo: VCG

 Tencent Music, the online music subsidiary of Tencent, announced on Tuesday that authorized music works on its "Music Cloud" program can be distributed on Apple Music, which insiders say will give Chinese musicians more opportunities to be heard by overseas music fans and carve out a place for themselves in the international music market.

Works from Chinese independent musicians, cover songs performed on variety shows and theme songs for TV dramas or movies may make their way to Apple Music.

The announcement published on Twitter noted that the goal of the deal: Bringing Tencent Music's premium music content from Chinese labels and creators to Apple Music users worldwide will enable music lovers to explore China's unique music culture and genres, further enhancing the global discovery of Chinese music and assisting in the international development of Chinese musicians."

Some Chinese music industry insiders consider the deal a win-win situation for both Tencent and Apple Music, which can expand the influence of the Chinese music industry and Chinese musicians, who now have another channel to reach the world. 

"Although global music publishing is not difficult, the formal cooperation between the two platforms will definitely gain more resources for Chinese musicians. After all, Apple Music has nearly 80 million paying users around the world, which can directly enhance the overseas influence and global value of Chinese music," Fan Zhihui, a music industry analyst based in Beijing, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

These musicians' works will also enrich the content library of Apple Music and expand the platform's copyright scale, increasing its competitive capability in the Chinese music market, analysts also said.

Tencent Music has cooperated with several international music companies before, including Universal Music, Warner Music and Sony Music Entertainment, collectively known as the "Big Three" record labels.

US company Warner Music established a strategic licensing agreement with Tencent Music. The two companies have agreed to launch a new joint venture record label leveraging Warner Music's global resources and experience in supporting artists' careers, according to a press release Tencent Music sent to the Global Times.

It entered in a partnership with South Korea's JYP Entertainment in March. The agreement gave Tencent Music the distribution rights to JYP's song catalogue including artists such as Twice and 2PM.

Tencent Music's network of music streaming platforms includes QQ Music, Kugou Music and Kuwo Music. According to South Korean media, the two companies are expected to maximize their synergy by establishing various music entertainment services, such as joint marketing, live-streaming events and other promotional activities.