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Universal Music Group Takes Majority Stake in Mavin Records

By Grace Chigbu

Universal Music Group (UMG) has made a significant move into the Nigerian music industry by acquiring a majority stake in Mavin Records, one of the country’s leading record labels. The deal, announced by UMG on Monday, marks a significant milestone in the global expansion of African music.


According to the statement released by UMG, the acquisition is subject to regulatory approval and is anticipated to be finalized by the end of the third quarter of 2024. As part of the deal, investment firm Kupanda Capital will retain a minority stake and continue to serve as a strategic advisor to Mavin Records. However, another investor, TPG, will fully exit the business.


Despite the change in ownership, Mavin Records will continue to be led by its founder and CEO, Don Jazzy, along with COO Tega Oghenejobo. This continuity in leadership underscores UMG’s confidence in the existing management team and their vision for the future of the label.


UMG Chairman and CEO, Sir Lucian Grainge, expressed his enthusiasm for the partnership, stating, “Our criteria for identifying partners is straightforward: great artists, great entrepreneurs, great people. With Don Jazzy, Tega, the Mavin Global team, and their artist roster, we’ve found ideal partners with whom to grow together.”


The acquisition comes after months of speculation about Mavin Records’ future, with reports emerging in October 2023 that the label was exploring investment opportunities and potential full-sale options. In a podcast interview earlier this year, Don Jazzy confirmed that the label had attracted interest from foreign investors, signaling the growing recognition of Nigerian music on the global stage.


The partnership between UMG and Mavin Records highlights the increasing prominence of African music in the international music industry. As UMG strengthens its presence in Nigeria, home to one of Africa’s most vibrant music scenes, the collaboration is expected to open up new opportunities for Mavin Records artists and contribute to the continued growth of the African music market.

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