• Monday, July 15, 2024
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BusinessDay

Chocolate City CEO, Abuchi Peter Ugwu, Discusses One Year of Music Business Leadership

We want to create a creative haven where people can create value for themselves, Says Chocolate City, CEO

It’s been over a year since I was appointed to lead Chocolate City. What has happened since then? What hasn’t happened?

Leading a team of over 250 people has been a wild ride with its successes, failures, learning experiences and exciting challenges. COVID, lockdowns, EndSARS, and other upheavals disrupted the music business income streams across the entertainment industry. The battle to position our music and talents became a lot tougher, as we found ourselves competing not just with other talents and labels within Nigeria- but across the world. Thankfully, one thing has remained steadfast through all this- the commitment of our team to deliver excellent results and create positive impact.

These are some of the highlights of the past year:

Blaqbonez, an energetic and versatile artist dropped his debut album “Sex Over Love” under the label. This album gained the #1 position on Nigerian album charts, 70 million-plus streams, and Rolling Stone feature naming it one of the best albums of 2021. He commenced 2022 by selling out his first show in Lagos with over 4000 people in attendance.

CandyBleakz, another prolific artist under our roster is a female rapper and singer-songwriter who strives to inspire young people with her story. Her recent single “Tikuku” is currently the number 5 most shazamed song globally with over 2 million streams on all platforms in less than a week .

We also signed and unveiled Noon Dave, an Afro R&B artist with the voice of an angel. He released his breathtaking single “Brunch” and this song has captured hearts and has become a fan favorite.

We unveiled popular producer Young Jonn as an artist. Young Jonn, fondly known as “The Wicked Producer” on the streets has been the brain behind a lot of street hits from Olamide, Kizz Daniel, and Naira Marley in the past. He has successfully transitioned to performing as an artist and released an EP that peaked on Top albums in Nigeria. His hit single “Dada” featuring Davido went on to become a viral song charting in over 20 countries.

We are especially proud to celebrate the continued success of the album “Ckay The First” and the smash hit single “Love Nwantiti” by Ckay. Originally released in 2020, Love Nwantiti took the world by storm with the numerous remixes we organized making it one of the most-streamed songs globally in 2021. The song was recently named one of the biggest Afrobeats songs in the world by Billboard magazine having garnered close to 1.4 billion streams on all platforms.

Our focus for the past year has been to rebuild the team, create great music and implement our “ArtistCentric” strategic plan. Now we’re set to create disruption on the charts on a global scale. We’re excited for what the future holds.

For most of my life, I have been a student of the Nigerian music business. I’ve seen it change and evolve over the past two decades. I think the story of Nigerian music is only beginning and we are pleased and proud at Chocolate City, to continue leading, learning, and sharing our stories and music with the world.

I want to say a big big thank you to our clients – the artists and musicians who have trusted us with their careers – we don’t take the privilege lightly and shall continue to serve your best interests. We thank our indefatigable team members led by our EVP Aibee Abidoye, our board of directors, our strategic partners, and last but not least our distribution partners- Warner Music International.

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