Sony Music Entertainment Acquires Entire Wati-B Catalog

Sony Music Entertainment Wati-B
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Sony Music Entertainment Wati-B
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Photo Credit: Wati-B

Sony Music Entertainment France announces an expansion of its 11-year partnership with Wati-B, acquiring the label’s entire catalog.

The agreement covers all albums and songs produced by Wati-B between 2009 and 2023, featuring French rap mainstays like Sexion d’Assaut and its solo members Maître Gims, Black M, and Lefa, as well as Tiakola, 4Keus, and Kodes. The catalog is one of the most successful in French rap.

The Wati-B catalog has received over 50 certifications, including 10 Diamond and 20 Platinum. It features well-known French rap hits including “Désolé” and “Wati by Night” by Sexion d’Assaut, “Est ce que tu m-aimes,” “Sapé comme jamais,” and “Bella” by Gims, Black M’s “Sur ma route,” and Tiakola’s more recent track, “Meuda.”

“We have had a long-standing collaboration with Wati-B and it is a superb example of a fruitful partnership, which has played a unique role in the popularization of rap in France,” said Marie-Anne Robert, Managing Director, Sony Entertainment France.

“Harnessing our passion, creativity, and global expertise, Sony Music France will continue to honor and nurture the Wati-B catalog, which played a significant role in contributing to our first rap successes in France in the 2010s.”

The acquisition of Wati-B is part of a broader strategic initiative from Sony Music France to enhance its local catalog. And it couldn’t come at a better time; the catalog’s share of music listening in France — the number two country in the world for rap music, behind the US — is consistently on the rise.

“French rap is definitely the second in the rap world,” said French rap expert and author Olivier Cachin in an interview with RFI. “It all started in the early 1980s, when the DJ Dee Nasty launched his radio show on Radio Nova in Paris.”

“Today, French hip-hop reaches a very wide range, from very underground and politicized trend to a more party-going, relaxed, and commercial trend. There is not one overarching idea of French rap — it is many trends,” Cachin explained. “Still, France remains the second nation of hip-hop in the world.”