Universal Music Makes a Serious Move Into French-Speaking Africa

Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire
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Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire
  • Save
Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire

Universal Music Group means business in the French-speaking African market, with a brand-new office in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire.

The Abidjan office will be responsible for increasing the company’s presence in the market, and it will be headed by Moussa Soumbounou, who is a long-time music executive who will function as the Managing Director of Western Africa. Soumbounou will report directly to Olivier Nusse, who is the head of Universal Music France.

Nusse says that the new office will be involved in a wide range of activities.  It will be responsible for both discovering new talent throughout French-speaking Africa and for producing their music, and it will also create a variety of opportunities for these talented people, which includes live performances.

The office will further work closely with the other Universal Music Group divisions that operate in the non-French-speaking parts of Africa.

The new office will be responsible for the following countries:

  • Benin
  • Burkina Faso
  • Burundi
  • Cabo Verde
  • Cameroon
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • Comoros
  • Congo
  • Côte d’Ivoire
  • Djibouti
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Gabon
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Madagascar
  • Mali
  • Niger
  • Sao Tome and Principe
  • Senegal
  • Seychelles
  • Togo

The new division has already had some significant signings.

This includes DJ Arafat (who is from the Ivory Coast), Locko and Tenor (who are both from Cameroon), Toofan (who is from Togo) and Kiff No Beat.

The label has been active in the live music scene, too, having set up a tour throughout Africa for French music legend Niska. They have also set up tours in France for African musicians such as Tenor.