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AirAsia bets big on ‘A-Pop’ launching RedRecords after tie up with Universal Music Group

AirAsia Group has launched RedRecords in partnership with record label Universal Music Group, with the aim to develop musical talent from the South East Asia region.

A press release on RedRecords said: “The innovative new label partnership will focus on signing, developing and breaking new Asian artists and elevating ‘A-pop’ globally to new audiences throughout the region and around the world.”

The label will be based in Kuala Lumpur and Los Angeles, relying on UMG’s skills in artist development with AirAsia’s regional and global marketing muscle to make ‘A-pop’ a regional and maybe even global phenomenon. 

AirAsia head of music Hassan Choudhury, Head of Music for AirAsia Group, who will take on the role of CEO of RedRecords. UMG had announced an expansion of operations within the region earlier this year with the launch of a regional headquarters in Singapore. 

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes who prior to starting the airline had spent over a decade with Warner Music said: “This announcement is incredibly important to me. It appears life has come full circle for both myself and my AirAsia brothers, Kamarudin and Nadda, whom I met through our early days in music. 

“We have already revolutionised air travel enabling everyone to fly and as we celebrate 18 years of operation for AirAsia – we are focused on transforming the airline into a global digital travel and lifestyle leader. 

“Now we are also heading back to our musical roots to revolutionise the future of Asian pop culture and give it the world wide stage it deserves in conjunction with Universal Music to launch RedRecords.”

Universal Music Group chairman and CEO Sir Lucian Grainge said: “The worldwide success of Latin and K-Pop has demonstrated that in the streaming era there are no barriers to great music regardless of language. 

“Together with the combined strategic marketing reach and resources of AirAsia and UMG, we can provide Asian artists an exciting opportunity to truly go global.”

UMG executive vice president of market development Adam Granite said: “We share a commitment to the long-term development and transformation of the music ecosystem within the region – filled with new talent that has the potential to reach almost 700 million people across South East Asia alone and where music is increasingly driven by a young, social and mobile-driven audience.

“Together we are confident that the team at RedRecords will help introduce A-pop to a new global audience, ready to embrace new talent from throughout Asia.”

RedRecords CEO and head of music for AirAsia group Hassan Choudhury said: “This is an excellent opportunity to leverage of both AirAsia and UMG’s potential in a musical journey. 

“Having worked for both of these incredible companies, witnessing first hand their enormous strengths in their respective industries, I aim to bring the creative forces of both teams together in order to help develop the undoubted music talent that is in Asia.”

The first artist on the label will be Thai-pop star and influencer Jannine Weigel.

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