Tencent Music Takes 10% Stake in GMM Music, ‘Thailand’s Leading Music Company,’ Under $70M Partnership Deal

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tencent music gmm music deal
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Tencent Music and its parent have acquired a 10 percent interest in Thailand’s GMM Music. Photo Credit: TME

Tencent Music and its parent have officially acquired a 10 percent stake in Bangkok-headquartered GMM Music at a $700 million valuation.

The QQ, Kugou, Kuwo, and WeSing operator Tencent Music, having scored a major GMM partnership about four years back, unveiled the $70 million investment today. Founded 41 years ago, GMM bills itself as “Thailand’s leading music company.”

According to the business’s website, the multifaceted operation at hand includes, among other things, a number of labels (such as White Fox and Genie Records), artist and rights management, the promotion of live shows, and merch distribution. Across the mentioned labels, GMM’s roster features Bodyslam, Palmy, Getsunova, and Tai Orathai, to name a few.

Bringing the focus back to the newly finalized investment, in securing the 10 percent GMM interest, Tencent Music and Tencent proper are said to have put up a combination of cash and a piece of their Joox Thailand streaming platform.

The subject of relatively little media attention, Joox operates in several markets outside the Chinese mainland – including, besides Thailand, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, and, until 2022, South Africa.

As described by the involved parties, the investment and adjacent collaborations will assist GMM Music in spearheading IPO-centered spin-off plans, which will then set the stage for “future music innovations to keep pace with the rapid evolution of the global music industry.”

Running with the point, GMM CEO Phawit Chitrakorn touted the perceived far-reaching operational benefits of the tie-up, under which his company will lean into tailored promotional initiatives on Joox.

“As the music industry is entering the second wave boom,” the GMM head of eight and a half years said in part, “with revenue surpassing all time high and continuing on the upswing, GMM Music has developed a new strategic roadmap to drive our future growth, along with continuously improving the infrastructure for the Thai music industry. One of our key strategies is to develop collaborative partnerships with international music industry leaders, who believe in the potential of Thai Music.

“The investment will solidify our spin-off plan, with an ambition to drive the New Music Economy in Thailand towards sustainable growth,” he continued. “This partnership will lead to cooperative efforts in expanding our business into new and larger markets, where China is one of the key target territories with its immense market potential.”

Building on the subject of the Chinese market’s expansion, for Tencent Music (NYSE: TME), shares in which are up almost 60 percent on the year, the investment represents the latest in a series of noteworthy 2024 announcements. Before disclosing a nearly 40 percent year-over-year spike in subscription revenue for Q1, the company kicked off 2024 by inking an extended licensing pact with Universal Music Group (UMG).

And when it comes to Thailand’s quick-developing music market – as well as its geographic significance against the backdrop of industry growth in different Asian nations – UMG last year spent $46 million on a majority stake in the catalog of RS Music.