Following a successful edition of the SESAC Latina Music Awards on June 17 in Los Angeles, SESAC Latina VP J.J. Cheng has left the company, Billboard has learned. Cheng, who spent nearly 14 years at SESAC, will be pursuing new digital ventures.
“My passion is to work with great music creators; nothing compares to that,” said Cheng in an email to friends and writers. “Through the years, “I’ve been in charge of growing SESAC Latina’s operations and I’ve had the opportunity to share goals with some of the most faithful and hard-working colleagues. I’m especially proud about being the founder and creative editor of the SESAC Latina magazine. At the same time, I’ve been a fierce advocate of educating composers and performers about the importance of digital music rights. I give that maximum priority given its huge importance on the future of the industry.”
During her tenure at SESAC, Cheng turned it from a very distant third choice for writers to a serious contender in the Latin music world. Cheng’s signings included Aleks Syntek, Fonseca, Reik, Robi “Draco” Rosa, Ricky Muñoz of Intocable, and, most recently, Nicky Jam and Gente De Zona. The last two signings, which took place since the beginning of the year, were a major coup considering the chart traction both artists currently have.
In the past year, 10 SESAC Latina tracks reached No. 1 on the Billboard charts.
Cheng also launched the SESA Latina YouTube Performance Award in 2013 as part of the SESAC Latina Awards, honoring acts with most plays on YouTube. Psy was the winner of that first award, while Nicky Jam and J Balvin won this year.
“I’m very passionate about each and every one of my signings, and I want to thank each and every one of them for the opportunity to work with them,” said Cheng. “But I’m not saying goodbye.”
SESAC had no immediate comment on Cheng’s departure.