The Benefits of a Member-Led Board

En Noticias por Merlin Team

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Merlin is the digital music licensing partner for the world’s most valuable and sophisticated independent labels and distributors. We’ve negotiated premium deals with Apple, Facebook, Spotify, TikTok, YouTube, and 40 other innovative platforms around the world. Our global membership represents 15% of the recorded music market, from independent record labels to distributors, and from artist management companies to other rightsholders. We are a mission-driven organization that operates like a not-for-profit and is funded entirely via a 1.5% admin fee. In addition to Merlin’s premium deals, we have world-class relationships, provide white-glove support, and a suite of partnerships that helps independents compete at the highest level.

The Basics of the Merlin Board

  • The Merlin Board is primarily responsible for protecting the interests of the global membership, directing the organization’s objectives, and helping inform company strategy
  • Each Merlin Board Member serves for a 2-year term, in an unpaid capacity
  • The Merlin Board meets in-person three times per year, with virtual meetings as required

The Responsibilities of the Merlin Board

  • The Merlin Board operates in a governance capacity with oversight and approvals. This includes, for example, setting the Admin Fee percentage (currently 1.5%), approving Merlin’s annual budget, advising on Merlin equity holdings, approving changes to the Merlin Membership Agreement, and setting the Merlin Membership Criteria
  • The Merlin Board provides perspective into independent activity and local music industries in countries around the world
  • The Merlin Board is an important forum for strategic conversations and ensures that what’s important to independents is being heard by the Merlin executives

The Values of the Merlin Board

  • Member first – the Merlin Board offers accountability to ensure that Merlin always drives value to the benefit of Merlin members
  • Equal seating – the Merlin Board ensures that every Merlin member has access to the same opportunities within Merlin, regardless of size, region, or genres
  • Global representation – elected by and from Merlin’s global membership, the Merlin Board informs Merlin with a diversity of voices and perspectives

The Elections of the Merlin Board

  • The Merlin Board is elected from the membership—every member is eligible to nominate a candidate (provided that member joined Merlin at least one year prior to the election process) and every member has an equal vote to elect the Merlin Board
  • The Merlin Board nomination and election process is held every two years for the entire board
  • The Merlin Board has sixteen (16) Elected Board Members that are nominated from the membership and voted on by membership, as follows:
    • 5 board members from US & Canada
    • 5 board members from the UK and Europe
    • 5 board members from All Other Countries
    • 1 Rotating Board Member Seat
  • The Merlin CEO has the authority to appoint Advisors who are non-voting Board Members

The Current Merlin Board

The following members reflect the current Merlin Board (2022–2024):

Elected Board Members

  • Carlos Mills, Mills Records
  • Chris Maund, Mushroom
  • Darius Van Arman, Secretly (Chairperson)
  • Horst Weidenmueller, !K7 Records
  • Jason Taylor, Redeye
  • Justin West, Secret City Records
  • Louis Posen, Hopeless Records
  • Marie Clausen, Ninja Tune
  • Martin Mills, Beggars Group
  • Michael Ugwu, Freeme Digital
  • Michel Lambot, PIAS Group
  • Pascal Bittard, IDOL
  • Pieter van Rijn, FUGA
  • Sandra Ortega, Altafonte
  • Tom Deakin, AudioSalad
  • Yushi Yamashita, RightsScale

Board Advisors

  • Glen Barros, Exceleration Music
  • Katie Alberts, Reach Records
  • Megan Jasper, Sub Pop
  • Rachel Buswell, Domino Music

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