Downtown Music Holdings has acquired AVL Digital Group and its portfolio of music distribution, rights management and artist services businesses, including CD Baby, AdRev, DashGo and Soundrop. DMH is the company behind Downtown Music Publishing and Songtrust.
The deal is estimated to be worth $200 million. In 2018, CD Baby is estimated to have generated $100M in earnings, accounting for almost 1/6th of independent artist revenue globally.
CD Baby pioneered distribution for independent artists, first with CDs and then as a launch partner for iTunes in 2003. It currently represent the largest independent sound recording catalog in the music industry with 10 million tracks from 900,000 artists, labels and other rights holders.
AVL will be led by CD Baby’s respected CEO Tracy Maddux, based in Portland, Oregon.
AVL’s physical product divisions including Disc Makers, BookBaby, and Merchly are being acquired by the Disc Makers executive team as the DIY Media Group. Disc Makers and AVL’s digital distribution businesses will maintain their strategic partnership so artists can continue to easily offer their fans both digital and physical products.
Downtown Music now has bragging rights as the leading provider of end-to-end services to artists, songwriters, labels, music publishers and other rights holders. Its global footprint will include over 300 employees spanning fourteen markets in North America, Europe, Asia, Australia, and Latin America.
“Tracy and his team have built a portfolio of music businesses operating at unmatched scale. AVL’s technology, diverse offerings and artist-first approach are well-positioned to power some of the fastest growing segments of the industry,” said Downtown Founder and CEO Justin Kalifowitz.
“This transaction will allow us to take the services we offer the independent music community to the next level,” added Maddux. “We are excited to continue to build leading platforms that help artists release, promote and monetize their music all around the world.”