JOHANNESBURG, SA (CelebrityAccess) — Warner Music South Africa announced the acquisition of one of the nation’s leading indie labels, Coleske.
Coleske, which is led by Arnold Coleske, together with his business partner Brendon Hargroves, and Paulo Azevedo, will continue to operate as a standalone business following the closure of the deal.
“As an artist myself, I’ve seen the business from both sides. We’ve built an amazing business here in South Africa, and I know that partnering with Warner Music will take it to the next level. Our artists can benefit from its global firepower, while still enjoying the boutique support of the team they know and trust at Coleske,” said Arnold Coleske.
The label, which primarily services Afrikaans-speaking pop artists, represents a label that includes Appel, Bobby van Jaarsveld, Demi Lee Moore, Dewald Wasserfal, Elvis Blue, Jay, Karlien Van Jaarsveld, Riaan Benade, Riana Nel and Ruhan du Toit.
However, some of Coleske’s English-speaking clients will be plugged into Warners’ international pipeline for collaborations with artists from other markets, including with those on Warner Music Nashville’s roster, the label group said.
Along with recorded music, Coleske also operates a live concert business, and produces the annual ‘Afrikaans is Groot’ concert in Johannesburg, the largest Afrikaans music event in the world. Following the merger, Warner Music will harness Coleske’s live capabilities on behalf of its international clients once live events pick up again in South Africa.
Coleske is also behind the successful South African televised talent show Die Kontrak, and is currently in talks to spin up an English language version of the show as well as to bring the format to other emerging markets.
“This is an exciting partnership that’ll see us grow our presence in the South African music market, while also supporting Coleske’s amazing artists worldwide. We’re not only catching up with our major competitors, who’ve been active in this genre for many years, we’re overtaking them. We’ll also be harnessing Coleske’s live infrastructure for the benefit of all our local and global stars in South Africa, significantly expanding our artist value proposition in the market,” said Alfonso Perez-Soto, President, Emerging Markets, Warner Recorded Music.