Credit Where Credit’s Due

Friday 5th October 2018

Any long-running relationship is bound to have its downs as well as ups, and over the years retailers have from time to time had some harsh words to say about their suppliers.

And that has often been particularly true of the relationship between indie record stores and the major record companies. Often it has reflected the gulf of understanding between huge multinational companies and what are often one- or two person businesses.

When it goes wrong it can become fractious, but when it goes right: that’s really something to celebrate.

So I was very happy to be part of a hugely positive meeting between around 30 independent retailers and Universal Music this week.

It was one of the most constructive and positive indie meetings I can remember, with Universal volunteering solutions to issues we had previously raised and taking huge strides forward on the operational side. 

Inevitably there are areas where the two sides are not completely aligned – such as D2C – but even here Universal are taking a positive approach, agreeing to try and address one of the indies’ biggest issues – that they at least be kept in the loop when D2C product is to be made available.

Many thanks to the Universal team of David Hawkes, Chris Shiels and indie rep extraordinaire Marc Faye d’Herbe as well as the wider operations and commercial teams.

Let us hope your competitors take note!


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