AirAsia and Universal Music Group strike musical deal to develop A-pop stars

AirAsia Group and Universal Music Group (UMG) will launch RedRecords, an new label partnership focused on signing, developing and breaking new Asian artists and elevating ‘A-pop’ globally to new audiences throughout the region and around the world.

RedRecords will focus on discovering and developing talent from Southeast Asia and throughout the wider continent and form a clear and unique sound that reflects the diverse and rich musical culture of the continent. RedRecords will be based in Kuala Lumpur and Los Angeles and will combine UMG’s industry leading track record in artist development with AirAsia’s regional and global marketing strength to expand A-Pop’s reach beyond national borders and languages to reach audiences around the world.

In addition to artist development and A&R, the label will provide distribution and marketing, as well as management and agency services. The label will be lead by Hassan Choudhury, head of music for AirAsia Group, who will take on the role of CEO of RedRecords.

Tony Fernandes, CEO of AirAsia Group said, “This announcement is incredibly important to me. It appears life has come full circle for both myself and my AirAsia brothers, Kamarudin and Nadda, whom I met through our early days in music. We have already revolutionised air travel enabling everyone to fly and as we celebrate 18 years of operation for AirAsia - we are focused on transforming the airline into a global digital travel and lifestyle leader. Now we are also heading back to our musical roots to revolutionise the future of Asian pop culture and give it the world wide stage it deserves in conjunction with Universal Music to launch RedRecords."

Lucian Grainge, chairman & CEO, Universal Music Group added that the worldwide success of Latin and K-Pop has demonstrated that in the streaming era there are no barriers to great music regardless of language. :Together with the combined strategic marketing reach and resources of AirAsia and UMG, we can provide Asian artists an exciting opportunity to truly go global," he added.

Adam Granite, EVP, market development, Universal Music Group said, “We are excited to officially launch RedRecords today with AirAsia. Together we share a commitment to the long-term development and transformation of the music ecosystem within the region."

Granite added that the region is filled with new talent that has the potential to reach almost 700 million people across Southeast Asia alone, and where music is increasingly driven by a young, social and mobile-driven audience. "Together we are confident that the team at RedRecords will help introduce A-pop to a new global audience, ready to embrace new talent from throughout Asia," he said.

Hassan Choudhury, head of music for AirAsia Group and CEO of RedRecords said, “This is an excellent opportunity to leverage of both AirAsia and UMG’s potential in a musical journey. Having worked for both of these incredible companies, witnessing first hand their enormous strengths in their respective industries, I aim to bring the creative forces of both teams together in order to help develop the undoubted music talent that lays here in Asia.”

RedRecords announce Thai sensation Jannine Weigel as marquee first signing.