Warner Music Group has today announced the acquisition of leading indie label Zhara Music, and the launch of the Russian division of its legendary Atlantic Records label.
Zhara Music, which was founded less than three years ago, has become a hugely significant player in the fast-growing Russian music industry. As a result of the deal, the label will be rebranded to continue its successful operations as Atlantic Records Russia, plugging into Warner Music’s global network. Zhara Music’s artists are already popular in markets such as China and the Middle East, and Warner Music’s global presence will help further promote them internationally.
Zhara Music was co-founded by artists and businessmen EMIN and Bahh Tee and its roster – which will be represented all over the world under the Atlantic Records banner – includes successful acts such as HammAli & Navai; Зомб; Morgenshtern; Slava Marlow; Rauf & Faik; Jony, Elman, Andro, Gafur (RAAVA Music); ЛСП; Idris & Leos; and DAVA.
Atlantic Records was founded in 1947 by Ahmet Ertegun and Herb Abramson and has been home to renowned artists including Aretha Franklin, Bruno Mars, Cher, Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, Genesis, Led Zeppelin, Lizzo, Ray Charles, The Rolling Stones and Wiz Khalifa.
Atlantic Records Russia will be headed by Bahh Tee as General Producer, and he will maintain a dedicated team of A&R and marketing specialists in a standalone office, separate to Warner Music Russia. This approach recognizes the unique nature of the team put together by Bahh Tee and EMIN, and their extraordinary success in the Russian market.
Alexander Blinov, General Director of Warner Music Russia, will provide strategic leadership for Atlantic Records Russia. Back office functions, such as legal and financial support, catalog registration and content distribution, will now be performed by the Warner Music Russia team. This ensures the Atlantic Records Russia catalog will benefit from the global music company’s latest technological solutions and best practices.
Zhara co-founder EMIN will now focus on his own business projects and will remain one of Atlantic Records Russia’s leading artists.
Bahh Tee says: “EMIN and I have been on an incredible journey since we founded Zhara less than three years ago. We knew fans loved our music and were hungry for new discoveries, but even we were surprised by how quickly things took off! Becoming part of the Warner Music family will help take our support for our artists to the next level both here and internationally. It’s a landmark day for me and my colleagues – we’ve really come of age.”
Alexander Blinov adds: “EMIN and Bahh Tee have poured their hearts and souls into building a label. They’re talented artists, sincere fans and successful business people, and that’s shone through in the incredible roster they’ve built. I’m delighted that Bahh Tee has agreed to launch Atlantic Records in Russia – connecting the world renowned brand to a whole new generation of artists from across Russia and beyond. It’s going to be a wild ride!”
This year Atlantic Records Russia will release the last album from HammAli & Navai, new albums by EMIN, Jony, Idris & Leos, LSP, Morgenshtern, Rauf & Faik and Slava Marlow, as well as a special collection dedicated to the launch of Atlantic Records Russia.