Apple has introduced a new advance fund designed to support independent music labels and their artists during the COVID-19 pandemic when many of us are feeling the pinch.
The Cupertino firm revealed to Rolling Stone that it had launched the scheme in an attempt to offset some of the negative impact of the virus on smaller independent labels and artists, offering one-off advance payments taken from future Apple Music royalties.
Firms must meet a $10,000 quarterly revenue threshold, and indie labels that work with larger firms cannot take advantage of the scheme, as it’s thought that they can be propped up by parent labels.
The coronavirus has had a significant impact on the music industry, with concerts canceled around the world and physical sales grounded to a halt, causing revenues to suffer.
Some independent labels are postponing albums until later in the year to avoid the threat of falling demand, similar to what Apple is planning with its upcoming iPhone 12 launch.
Speaking to Rolling Stone confirming the news, Apple said: “These are difficult times for the music industry globally. Livelihoods are at risk, with multiple sources of income that our industry relies on vanishing overnight.
“Apple has a deep, decades-long history with music, and we are proud to be in close partnership with the best labels and artists in the world. We want to help.
“Today Apple Music is announcing the creation of a $50 million-plus fund available as advances on future royalties to independent labels, to help them pay artists and maintain operations.”
Are you pleased with this news? What else should Apple be doing to support independent artists and labels during this time? Let us know on social media and check back soon for more news and rumors on everything Apple Music and entertainment, every week.