Apple quietly extends $50M to aid indie labels affected by coronavirus pandemic

The funds are offered to keep indie label artists paid, and operations running.

Apple Music

Photo: Chesnot / Getty Images

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Apple is reported to have quietly launched a $50M fund to bolster indie labels that have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This news comes via a letter addressed to indie record labels from the Cupertino tech giant – that was acquired by Rolling Stone.

“These are difficult times for the music industry globally. Livelihoods are at risk, with multiple sources of income that our industry relies on vanishing overnight.”, the letter continues, “Apple has a deep, decades-long history with music, and we are proud to be in close partnership with the best labels and artists in the world. We want to help.”

The funds, which are being offered as an advance of future royalties, are available to indie labels with a direct distribution deal with Apple Music, and quarterly earnings of at least $10,000 on the service.

Apple has said that it is offering the funds “in good faith that labels will channel funds to artists and label operations based on financial need”, adding, “we hope that together we can help provide stability for artists by sustaining an enduring and vibrant music sector.”

As COVID-19 continues to take its toll on the worldwide music industry, an increasing number of companies have announced initiatives to lessen the blow felt by music workers globally. Recently, SoundCloud announced a $15M set of initiatives to support its creator community.

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