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Universal Music Group (UMG) is setting foot in Ethiopia with what it describes as a “first-of-its-kind” licensing agreement with Ethiopian streaming platform Sewasew Multimedia.

According to the press release, Sewasew Multimedia will be responsible for the digital distribution and marketing of UMG’s extensive catalog of music in Ethiopia. This includes music from UMG’s globally recognized labels, such as Def Jam, Interscope Records, Island Records, Motown Records, Republic Records, and Virgin Records, as well as music from their African divisions, such as Def Jam Africa, Motown Gospel Africa, and Republic Records Africa.

Launched in October 2022, Sewasew is a music and entertainment company backed by RIDE’s Samrawit Fikru and has signed over 100 artists, including prominent figures in the Ethiopian music scene.

“We are excited to partner with Sewasew Multimedia to bring UMG’s music to the Ethiopian market. UMG has a long and successful presence in Africa, and given Ethiopia’s rich and vibrant music culture, we are excited to work with Sewasew Multimedia to help grow the Ethiopian music industry to its full potential,” said Ulrik Cahn, UMG’s EVP Africa, Middle East, and Asia.

The deal is also said to help bring Ethiopian artists’ music to a global audience. Sewasew is set to release exclusive albums, starting this month, as part of its goal to promote Ethiopia’s creative arts industry. Aside from UMG.

“We are thrilled to partner with UMG, the world leader in music-based entertainment, to bring their extensive catalog of music to the Ethiopian market. This partnership is a testament to Ethiopia’s growing importance in the global music industry, and we are confident that it will be a success for both companies,” said Abraham F., Managing Director, Sewasew Multimedia.

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