In what appears to be a fairly significant move in the YouTube MCN (Multi Channel Network) space in India, Samir Bangara, AR Rahman and Shekhar Kapur backed Qyuki has signed what Bangara calls a "strategic and operational" deal, for doing content around music from Universal Music Group (UMG), and its affiliated publishing entity, Universal Music Publishing Group. Bangara, who was MD (Digital) for Disney-UTV, took over as CEO and MD of Qyuki last year, and invested in the company as well. Multi-Channel Networks are entities that affiliate with multiple YouTube channels, to offer content creators with assistance in areas including product, programming, funding, cross-promotion, partner management, digital rights management, monetization, sales, and audience development. They can choose to commission content that they own, license it from labels, or merely help partners monetize their channels. They also liase with brands to do branded content. Qyuki, which has created its own "partner network" of content creators, operates 60-70 YouTube channels, has plans to work with Universal Music in three key ways: 1. Create cover versions of YouTube content: "There are more than 30,000 tracks that Qyuki artists can sing from the Universal library and monetize it as a part of our network. Typically there is a conflict of interest, but here we are tied in to the value chain," Bangara says. This allows artists to do cover versions on YouTube, without the fear that Universal Music might claim rights over it and either shut it down, or keep the money for themselves. This…
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