Native Tongue Snapped up by Concord
Native Tongue is changing hands.
The esteemed independent music publisher is acquired by Concord, the U.S.-based indie music giant which now has its entry proper into Australasia — and a “strategic” opportunity to coordinate its activities across Asia.
Native Tongue is a family business, founded in 2003 by New Zealander Chris Gough, and run by siblings Jaime and Chelsea Gough since his semi-retirement in 2014.
A new business is formed, Concord Music Publishing ANZ, and based in Melbourne with staff in Sydney and Auckland.
Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.
In those two decades since launch, Native Tongue has assembled a roster including such writers as Courtney Barnett, Stuart Crichton (Backstreet Boys, Kesha, Kygo), Sophie Curtis (Cosmos Midnight, Jessica Mauboy, aespa), Dave Dobbyn, Jon Hume (Dean Lewis, Sofi Tukker), M-Phazes (Ruel, Remi Wolf), Gin Wigmore, and Marlon Williams, and enjoyed success in several Asian markets.
Native Tongue is also the sub-publisher for over 40 international catalogs, and has represented Concord in ANZ for more than 12 years.
“This is the start of a new chapter for us,” comments Jaime Gough, who leads the team as managing director of Concord Music Publishing ANZ; along with Chelsea Gough, SVP; David Nash, VP publishing and Matt Tanner, VP A&R.
“Our team has worked hard to provide the best publishing service in the region, so to combine this with the support of an independent global music powerhouse will enable us to provide a superior international service for our local songwriters and artists.”
Headquartered in Nashville with offices in Los Angeles, New York, London, Berlin and Miami, Concord also has staff in Toronto, Tokyo and Melbourne and a catalog consisting of nearly 900,000 songs.
Australia and New Zealand are “important music markets in their own right and this is a region that we have wanted to invest in for many years,” comments John Minch, Concord’s president of international publishing.
“This will be an important strategic move for Concord in coordinating our Asia publishing initiatives,” he explains, “which Jaime will handle.”
Concord itself was said to be exploring a sale last year, with sources telling Billboard a deal would be worth more than US$4 billion.
“To be able to take this next step with friends that we have worked closely with for many years is exciting,” says Jaime Gough, who also serves on the board of APRA AMCOS and AMPAL. “We know Concord believes in the team we have here, and in the Australasian market. This will be fun.”
The development was announced late Thursday (Aug. 4), some hours after Jaime Gough zoomed in for the “catalog sales” panel at Indie-Con in Adelaide.