German Digital Distributor Zebralution Purchases Apple Music and Spotify-Certified Services Provider Encoding Management Services

Two years ago, Warner Music Group sold Zebralution.

A consortium of German indie music industry executives, including Christof Ellinghaus, Konrad von Loehneysen, and Zebralution’s founders, Kurt Thielen and Sascha Lazimbat, agreed to buy the digital distribution company based in Berlin.

The sale formed part of Warner Music’s $200 million divestment deal following its purchase of Parlophone Label Group (PLG) in 2013.

Now, the Berlin-based digital distributor has confirmed a significant acquisition.

Purchasing EMS.

Zebralution has wholly acquired the shares of Encoding Management Services (EMS), according to Music Business Worldwide.

The digital distribution purchased the shares of the technical services provider from founders Marc Radermacher and Irmin and Levin Wiechmann.  All three founded EMS in 2010.  The company provides solutions for ingesting, encoding and delivering audio, video, and e-book files to download shops, streaming services, and digital media services.

All three will also remain in the company.  Radermacher will serve in his current role as Managing Director.  Irmin Wiechmann will serve as Chief Technology Officer of Zebralution Group, including EMS.  Levin Wiechmann will serve as Creative Director.

Zebralution has used EMS technology as a core part of its business since 2005.

Following the acquisition, the technical services provider will continue operating as an independent company.  EMS will also have its own team and clientele.  In addition to Zebralution, current clients include distributors GoodToGo, Indigo, !K7, mbassador, TBA, Tonpool Digital, and wordandsound.

The technical services provider is also one of four Spotify’s Recommended Delivery Platforms.  On Apple Music, EMS is a certified Encoding House.

Speaking about the acquisition, Kurt Thielen, Zebralution’s CEO, explained,

The DSPs‘ technical requirements are constantly growing and so are the demands on the tools we want to provide to our distribution clients.

Confirming the digital distributor’s headcount has now grown,

We’re particularly pleased to welcome 13 new colleagues that make up one of the best teams in the industry to the Zebralution family.

Radermacher added both companies will now grow together.


Featured image by Zebralution (CC by 2.0).