A2IM Heads South
A2IM and representatives from 11 indie labels are headed south of the border this week. VP Records, Dead Oceans, Naxos, Yep Roc and more will join American Association for Independent Music president Rich Bengloff on a mission to Brazil April 18 – April 22.
The trip, which will include stops in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, is being funded in part by the U.S. Department of Commerce and the International Trade Administration in a new attempt to do business in one of the world’s most important emerging music markets. Brassland Records, Blue Horizon Records, Lollipop/Radikal Records, ATO Records, 335 Records, Codigo/Fania and ZOHO Music will also send envoys.
In January, A2IM-sponsored trips to MIDEM in France were similarly subsidized by the Department of Commerce, which has awarded the trade organization a grant designed to increase exports from small businesses.
Sales at Rough Trade Up 25%
Rough Trade, the iconic independent UK record store and cradle to punk and indie rock since 1976, starts out 2013 with a particularly strong quarter. Sales at the retailer are up 25 percent in Q1, marking a strong contrast with the recent fortunes of its competitors, including the much larger HMV. Sales at Rough Trade’s online storefront were up 60 percent, and the company plans to open new brick-and-mortar outlets in New York as well as the UK later this year.
NXNE Gets a New Director
Chris Roberts, the former Head of Artist Relations for Vice Records, has been snapped up by North By Northeast as its new festival director. The Toronto-based music, film and arts organization will put on its 19th festival in June.
At Vice, Roberts also headed up the company’s experiential department and helped curate The Creators Project events around the world. In addition to his experience, Roberts brings a cool factor and connections to NXNE, which was founded as a response to SXSW in 1995. His signings to Vice Records include The Black Lips, Action Bronson, The Raveonettes and OFF! among others.