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UK’s Crockford Mgmt allies with US’s Friends at Work

London-based Crockford Management has announced a partnership with Los Angeles’ Friends at Work, founded by veteran artist manager Ty Stiklorius.

The new joint venture will see the companies pool their resources to provide their clients with management services worldwide, according to a launch announcement. The partnership stems from a meeting between Lily Crockford, Crockford Management partner and daughter of founder and CEO Paul, and Friends at Work’s president of management, Adina Friedman, at a Grammys event in LA last year.

Says Lily: “In a very competitive industry it’s hard to find people you both want to work with and trust. Crockford Management has always been an independent company, and that hasn’t stopped us having global success, but partnering with other managers who share our values and drive can only further benefit our roster.

“Upon meeting Adina I knew instantly that this was the kind of team that we could build something special with.”

“Partnering with other managers who share our values and drive can only further benefit our roster”

Crockford Management’s roster includes Mark Knopfler, Youngr, Rothwell, Wild Front and Get Cape, Wear Cape, Fly, while Friends at Work represents the likes of John Legend, Lindsey Stirling, Raphael Saadiq and RuthAnne.

“We are so happy to be partnering with Crockford Management,” adds Friedman. “When I met Lily I realised we shared the same vision and was impressed by her experience with high-powered artists like Jessie J and Iggy Azalea.

“When it came time for us to find a partner on the other side of the Atlantic, I knew Crockford would be the perfect team to provide our clients the level of service to further set them up for global success.”


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Coda launches Independent Sports agency

Leading UK booking outfit Coda Agency today took the wraps off its new sports agency, Coda Independent Sports.

A joint venture with Independent Talent Group (with which Coda formed a strategic partnership last year) and Paul and Barney Crockford of Crockford Management, Coda Independent Sports aims to become “one of the top global sports agencies”, according to Coda.

Initially focusing on football, Coda Independent Sports – incorporated on 12 January 2018, but officially launched today (11 December) – already counts among its clients Premier League players including Jordon Ibe (AFC Bournemouth), Kortney Hause (Wolverhampton Wanderers) and Kadeem Harris (Cardiff City).

Paul Crockford, whose company manages Mark Knopfler, Youngr, Wild Front and Blue Americans, says: “Coda Independent Sports is a unique offering combining business expertise with personal attention and access to a global infrastructure across all media unparallelled in the sports field.”

Coda partner James Whitting adds: “We are also really pleased to be teaming up with the Crockfords in launching our sports agency, Coda Independent Sports. Just need to sign some Arsenal players and that will be job done!”

“Coda Independent Sports is a unique offering”

In other news, Debbie Ward has joined Coda as the agency’s lead on brand partnerships, sync and corporate.

Ward has more than 20 years’ experience developing brand collaborations in media and live music, including a nine-year spell leading brand partnerships for MAMA Festivals/Live Nation and, more recently, working on the launch of Global’s new UK festival business. Ward exited Global earlier this year to take up a CCO role at women’s collective AllBright.

She comments: “I’m really looking forward to this new challenge. Coda has a stellar reputation and an epic portfolio of artists. There’s so much opportunity to collaborate with brands and talent to create content-rich, engaging and potentially ground-breaking solutions.”

Adds Whitting: “We are delighted to welcome Debbie to Coda. Debbie comes with a vast knowledge of brand partnerships and we are very excited for the prospect of the additional services and revenues she is going to bring to our clients.”


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Alex Hardee announced as IFF 2018 keynote

Coda Agency partner Alex Hardee has been revealed as the keynote interviewee for the fourth International Festival Forum (IFF), taking place in London later this month.

Hardee – the subject of an IQ feature last year celebrating his quarter-century as an agent – follows in the footsteps of Isle of Wight Festival’s John Giddings, Rock am Ring’s Marek and Andre Lieberberg and Glastonbury Festival founder Michael Eavis to take the hot seat on 27 September at the invitation-only event for festivals and bookers.

His interviewer will be veteran manager Paul Crockford, known for his work with Dire Straits, Mark Knopfler and Paul Simon.

“Thursday at IFF starts with a session that could well go down in conference history: Alex Hardee’s first-ever keynote interview,” say conference organisers. “The Coda Agency co-founder and partner boasts over 25 years in the business and a roster that includes Bastille, Liam Gallagher, London Grammar, Missy Elliott, Rag’n’Bone Man, Sia and Tom Odell. And with a family background in comedy (he was recently described by Music Week as “the business’s funniest man”), Alex is never short of an opinion.”

“Thursday at IFF starts with a session that could well go down in conference history”

IFF 2018 launched in April, with agency partners including CAA, Coda, Primary Talent, X-ray Touring, United Talent Agency, ITB, ATC Live, MN2S, Pitch & Smith and OTM Touring. IFF takes place on 25–27 September around Camden in north London, at venues including Fest (formerly Proud Camden), Dingwalls, Camden Assembly and Lockside Camden. The morning conference sessions feature a mixture of panels, workshops and the IFF Keynote, while the afternoon and evening are dedicated to agency showcases and networking.

Adding to the previously announced showcases by UTA, Primary Talent, ATC Live and Midnight Mango, the IFF 2018 conference agenda is fast approaching completion. Kicking off Wednesday’s conference schedule at 10am is the Festival Season 2018, chaired by Coda’s Clementine Brunel, which looks beyond the headlines to discover the current festival state of play, while the Generation Game sees Mojo Concerts’ Kim Bloem ask whether industry’s future bosses are rewriting the rulebook or following the lead of those that have come before them.

On Thursday, Beyond the Main Stage: Adventures in Non-Music sees PR guru Nikki McNeill highlights the new forms of entertainment we can expect to see at festivals in future, while digital evangelist Sammy Andrews’s Curation Session explores the best platforms and services available to festival bookers in an increasingly data-driven business.

Full event details, including last-minute tickets for festivals, are online at


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PRS tariff talks stall amid direct licensing dispute

The implementation of PRS for Music’s proposed new live music tariff has ground to a halt, following an objection over the lack of any provision for direct licensing, IQ has learnt.

The British performance rights organisation (PRO) announced last September it had the support of all “major relevant industry bodies”, including the Concerts Promoters’ Association, the National Arenas Association, Music Venue Trust and the Association of Independent Festivals, to push ahead with overhauling the 30-year-old popular music concerts (LP) tariff for shows and festivals, and had submitted plans for a new fee structure to the UK’s Copyright Tribunal for consideration.

However, “any organisation or person wishing to object” to PRS’s application was given until 27 October 2017 (later extended to 3 November) to do so, and PACE Rights Management – the company set up by manager Paul Crockford and agent Adam Elfin to assist public performance licensing directly on behalf of writers and publishers – made an official ‘request for permission to intervene’ over concerns that the new-look LP tariff failed to account for the growth of direct licensing.

The Copyright Tribunal agreed that PACE had a substantial interest, and granted it permission.

As revealed by IQ in July 2016, a growing number of major artists are choosing to bypass traditional blanket licences from PROs in favour of having their public performance royalties paid directly. The rise of direct licensing means many festivals are being forced to pay multiple licensees, as no PRO yet offers an ‘opt-out’ for artists who are not members and are licensing directly.

PACE made an official request for permission to intervene over concerns the new LP tariff failed to account for the growth of direct licensing

European festival association Yourope, for example, has advised against booking direct-licensing acts until a solution can be found.

On 22 February, PACE and lawyers for PRS appeared at the Copyright Tribunal hearing, which a person in attendance tells IQ went in favour of PACE, who sought non-ratification of PRS’s application and that all parties be asked to discuss a tariff that takes in to account direct licensing.

The parties are now in those discussions, ahead of a second hearing currently pencilled for 2 May. Any agreement reached by the parties, however, will only serve as assistance for the Copyright Tribunal to understand the various positions, as it has full authority to ratify or impose whatever tariff it deems reasonable and compliant with the law.

A spokesperson for PRS for Music declined to comment pending the tribunal’s decision.

Tariff LP has been levied at a flat rate of 3% of gross box-office receipts since 1988.


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