Sony Music UK partner with record label WEAREBLK03 November 2020 - Press release
A joint venture partnership with Sony Music and record label WEAREBLK has been announced today (03.11.20). The deal, led by DJ Semtex (Director of Artist Development, Sony Music) will see entrepreneurs and founders of the label Anthony ‘Antz’ Robb (22), Abdikarim “Abdi” Abdille (24) and Aidan Glennon (30), sign and develop artists across hip hop, UK rap, drill, grime, afrobeat, afro swing and R&B.
Abdi, Antz and Aidan are trailblazers and tastemakers within youth culture and have individually founded their own highly influential social media brands and businesses. The pioneering executives will work closely with DJ Semtex and report into Dipesh Parmar (President, Ministry of Sound).
Antz launched imjustbait, one of the best-known music and culture Instagram accounts in the UK, which he established in 2014 at the age of just 16. imjustbait has accumulated more than four million followers and Antz has collaborated with global brands through the platform. Antz has used the platform to promote underground music and has cultivated fanbases by spotting talent and endorsing early music from artists including Dave, Young T & Bugsey, B Young and Deno.
Abdi is the Founder of Abdi TV, a music-based social media brand. The account launched in 2012 while Abdi was at university studying computer science and has become synonymous with spotting the hottest rising UK talent. Abdi TV launched the career of Swarmz with Aidan, signing his first single Lyca to WE ARE BLK. The record spent 12 weeks on the chart and achieved BPI silver record status since.
Aidan has worked at the cutting edge of artist development since starting his career at Insanity Group in 2012. He was a Director at Management 16 in 2016 and most recently, has been running Ditto Management in the UK alongside Matt Dodds and working with artists including Nathan Dawe, Big Zuu, NSG and, together with Antz and Abdi, has been developing Niko B.
DJ Semtex said: "I started working with Abdi and Antz because I realised, I was being influenced via their platforms, which introduced me to new artists that I then played on my radio show. They are a starting point for emerging artists that have recorded their first bedroom demo, or artists that are overlooked by traditional outlets and need an online viral boost on the streets. Individually Abdi, Antz, and Aidan bring a unique skillset to the table. Collectively, they have a fresh methodology for discovering artists, and rapidly building audiences.”
WEAREBLK has already achieved chart success with Niko B ‘Who’s That What’s That’. The track has more than twenty million worldwide streams and spent 11 weeks inside the Official UK Top 40 after first charting in June.
Antz Robb said: “Music has always been a huge passion of mine. Having the opportunity to contribute to culture on a bigger scale through WEAREBLK is something I’m grateful for.”
Abdikarim Abdille said: “Music changed my life and I’m looking forward to returning the favour to others by discovering artists and sharing new music through our label. I’m excited about what we can achieve working with the team at Sony Music.”
Aidan Glennon said: “It’s incredible to be working with Abdi and Antz to build a new and credible label within the music industry. They have already developed careers for many artists and with our ambition combined with Semtex and Dipesh’s experience, I know we can accomplish great things.”
Dipesh Parmar said: “I’m hugely excited to partner with Abdi and Antz, they are the future of the music business. Alongside Aidan, WEAREBLK is at the forefront of UK culture. Their ability to work with new digital media, alongside their taste and hunger to break new artists is a gamechanger and a blueprint for a record label of the future.”