The Universal Music Group strikes a deal with Curio on Thursday 17th February 2022 to develop an NFT fan collection for its record labels and artists.
UMG’s Deal With Curio
The agreement represents a significant step forward for the world’s largest music corporation, which, like its competitors, relies primarily on streaming music for its financial survival.
Universal Music Group has announced that it would collaborate with Curio to create digital artwork and other collectibles for the label and its artists. Starting in March, Curio will act as an online store for fans to purchase legally licensed NFTs, thanks to a partnership between Capitol Music Group and British singer-songwriter Calum Scott.
Exploring NFTs and Web3
NFTs and Web3, the next generation of the internet based on blockchain technology, present an opportunity for labels and artists to create unique digital products for fans at a time when streaming has made music ubiquitous, according to Michael Nash, Universal Music Group’s executive vice president of digital strategy.
In an interview with Reuters, Nash said, “With Web3, we have a chance to have ownership on top of access.” NFTs are one-of-a-kind data files that can contain music, art, and other media.
“With all the innovation happening around Web3 and NFTs, you’ve got the opportunity to make all kinds of digital products available that provide that ownership … And you have technologically enforced scarcity, so you can appeal to collectors,” Nash said.
UMG has been experimenting with methods to cash in on the rising popularity of digital collectibles, even forming a singing group, Kingship, comprised exclusively of simian characters from the NFT brand Bored Ape Yacht Club. Hollywood celebrities and other collectors have been enamored with the animated apes, which exist as one-of-a-kind things on the digital blockchain.
Why UMG Chose Curio
Universal discovered a well-versed executive in Curio’s co-founder and co-Chief Executive Officer Ben Arnon, who previously worked for Universal Music Group. Marc Geiger, one of Curio’s consultants, was the former head of music at William Morris Endeavor.
Curio, which was created in 2020 and released its first NFT in February, has reached a watershed moment with this relationship. Working with music, film, and television industry partners, the firm has since published over 75,000 digital artifacts.
NFTs inspired by Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods” television series and Universal Pictures’ 2010 cult film “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” are available on the platform.
According to Reuters, Arnon designed the NFT marketplace to be accessible to ordinary users, even those who had never used bitcoin before.