Kobalt Names Richard Sanders President

Richard Sanders has been tapped to serve as President of Kobalt Music Group. Willard Ahdritz, Founder and CEO, made the announcement Friday (1/27) at Midem. Reporting to Ahdritz, Sanders will be based in Kobalt’s New York offices.

As part of the newly created position, Sanders will oversee Kobalt’s global front office operations such as artist relations, business development, synch licensing and creative services across the publisher’s multiple rights divisions.

With 30 years experience, Sanders was previously Sony Music’s Chairman of International & President of Global Marketing. Prior to his tenure at Sony, he held executive positions at RCA Records, Sir Richard Branson’s V2 Records and Arista Records.

Sanders’ appointment comes on the heels of last week’s launch of Kobalt’s Artist and Label Services division, and Neighbouring Rights division. The Artist and Label Services division is propelled by the company’s acquisition of AWAL, which distributes and promotes the recorded music of more than 5,000 independent labels and artists, including Radiohead, Arctic Monkeys, the Editors, and Moby.

“As Kobalt enters this new phase of global expansion and rolls out next generation client services for our artists, labels and content owners I am very pleased to welcome Richard,” said Ahdritz. “He is an executive who shares my vision and can work alongside me, providing a recording rights DNA to our proven publishing service model. Richard is a dynamic entrepreneurial leader with vast international experience, relationships and a uniquely successful track record of delivering both operational and creative results as well as managing both creative and executive talent.”

Added Sanders, “I’m thrilled to be joining the entire Kobalt team and supporting Willard’s vision for the continued expansion of the company and the development of artist and label services. Throughout my career supporting the needs of the artist has always been my passion and focus, thus I am particularly excited to join Kobalt which continues to set new standards in transparency and carries a solid reputation as a client-friendly company designed to serve that same objective.”


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Sarah Skates has worked in the music business for more than a decade and is a longtime contributor to MusicRow.

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