Importantly, the pair continue, Sparta "empowers independent artists around the world to plug into two of 300's core values: speed and flexibility."
Liles, CEO of 300, and Stevenson, a partner in the business, aren’t shy to talk up their ambitions. "We don’t just see this as a game-changing moment for 300," they say. "It’s a game-changer for the music industry."
Sparta opened in beta in late 2020, and has attracted a “wide array” of artists to its invite-only network. In the months since, the distro unit has helped 300 identify and develop partnerships with Jeris Johnson, HD4 President and others, the message continues.
300 is coming off a banner year during which Megan Thee Stallion was crowned hip-hop royalty, with a top 10 debut on the Billboard 200 for her Suga EP and a string of Billboard Hot 100 hits, including “Don’t Stop” with labelmate Young Thug and a No. 1 track with "Savage."
Since its foundation as an independent in 2013, the company has scored No. 1 singles and/or albums from Fetty Wap (Fetty Wap), Migos (Culture, “Bad & Boujee” featuring Lil Uzi Vert) and Young Thug (So Much Fun, Cabello’s “Havana”).
Liles co-founded 300 alongside Lyor Cohen (now YouTube’s head of global music) and Todd Moscowitz (now Alamo Records CEO), who have since departed, and Roger Gold who is still with the company and also manages Camila Cabello’s. In late 2020, former Republic Records and Island Def Jam executive Rob Stevenson joined 300 as a partner to run it with Liles and Gold.
In the years since 300's arrival, the independent music sector has powered ahead, thanks in part to the democratization of distribution through digital technology.
The independents are the fastest-growing sector of the global recorded music industry, reports the Worldwide Independent Network, representing just short of 40% of global recorded music with total global revenues of $6.9 billion in 2017, the most recently-available data.
With indies celebrating Independent Music Month, "we couldn’t think of a better and more appropriate time to unveil this new initiative," conclude Liles and Stevenson. "The future of music is independent, and with Sparta Distribution empowering independents, today that future is one step closer."