AWAL, the British music distribution and services company, has officially launched its operations in India and South Asia. This strategic expansion comes hot on the heels of AWAL’s acquisition of OKListen, a leading digital music platform catering to independent artists and record labels.
Supported by Sony Music India, AWAL aims to provide a wide array of services tailored for independent-minded artists in the region. This includes a comprehensive suite of offerings such as global marketing, creative support, sync and brand partnerships, radio promotion, distribution services, and access to real-time, in-depth music analytics.
Vijay Basrur, founder and CEO of OKListen, has been appointed as the Head of India & South Asia for AWAL. He will report directly to Lonny Olinick, CEO of AWAL, and Vinit Thakkar, the Managing Director of Sony Music India.
Lonny Olinick, the CEO of AWAL, expressed his enthusiasm, stating, “The independent music community across the region is brimming with potential. Together with Vijay, I am confident that AWAL will emerge as the creative nucleus for independent artists in India and South Asia. We are committed to nurturing careers that prioritize artistic integrity and foster global success.”
Vinit Thakkar, the Managing Director of Sony Music India said, “AWAL, in conjunction with Sony Music, offers an exhilarating and comprehensive platform for artists at any stage of their careers. By placing the artist first and empowering them to control their own destiny, we open up boundless opportunities for them to showcase their music to fans worldwide.”
Vijay Basrur, whose career spans over 23 years in the music, technology, and business sectors, stated, “AWAL is already renowned in the region for championing artists across all career stages,” Basrur shared. “I am thrilled to bring AWAL’s expertise and global reach to our talented creators and forge the next phase of their careers.”
Having founded OKListen in 2012, India’s first homegrown digital distribution service, Basrur has collaborated with over 4,000 musicians across the country. Notable independent artists such as The Local Train, When Chai Met Toast, Bipul Chettri, Sanam, and many more have benefited from OKListen’s platform.
Prior to founding OKListen, Basrur held leadership roles in various digital startups and corporations, specializing in product development, technology, and digital transformation. Additionally, he serves as a member of the Board of Trustees for the Applied Environmental Research Foundation (AERF), an organization dedicated to the conservation of biodiversity.