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Worldwide Independent Network Names Board, Unveils New International Structure

Worldwide Independent Network (WIN), the organization that brings together local independent music trade bodies across the globe, taps five new board members, while ratifying the reappointment of its chair and treasurer.

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Dario Draštata (Dallas Records, Croatia), Fran Sandoval (IMICHILE, Chile) and Marty Ro (Sound Republica, South Korea) are among the new directors named to the 20-strong WIN board, announced Thursday, Feb. 8. The other new faces are Alejandro Varela (S-Music, Argentina) and Sridhar Swaminathan (SIMCA, India), who are named as observers.

The trade association gives “warm thanks” to outgoing members Francesca Trainini (PMI, Italy), Jeffrey Chiang (Fluxus, South Korea) and Oliver Knust (IMICHILE, Chile).

Renewed each year, the board is comprised of independent music company and trade association representatives from around the world, appointed by WIN members on a geographical basis.

The organization rings in the changes this year by creating a new international structure based on five regional blocs: North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia and Australasia, a move that reflects “diversity of languages, genres and cultures that make up its membership,” reads a statement.

Meanwhile, Zena White (Partisan Records, U.S.) and Maria Amato (AIR, Australia) are reappointed as chair and treasurer, respectively. Melbourne-based Amato, the CEO of the Australian Independent Record Labels Assn., in 2022 became WIN’s first female chair and the organization’s first from the southern hemisphere.

“I am grateful to be given the opportunity to continue as chair of WIN and my congratulations go to our five new board members,” comments White in a statement. “Our North Star is to strengthen the sector by having an independent music trade association in all countries where there is a commercial music business. The new regional bloc structure reflects our purpose to connect as many territories as we can. I am particularly proud of WIN’s work with groups in Latin America and Asia-Pacific on their specific agendas, as well as adding associations in India, Paraguay and Bulgaria to our membership.”

The organization launched in 2006 and became a trade association in 2016, serving as a global coordination and support body for the independent sector, and representing thousands of music companies and professionals worldwide. Its focus is on long-term development and sustainability.

Each year, WIN commissions and publishes the WINTEL market report that measures the economic and cultural impact of the independent music sector globally.

Next up, White and Noemí Planas, CEO of WIN, will join reps from member associations in other Latin American countries to visit Guadalajara, Mexico in late February and early March for the FIM GDL conference and to host an independent labels summit and WINHUB networking gathering.

WIN board for 2024:

North America

Garry West (Compass Records, U.S.)

Gord Dimitrieff (Aporia Records, Canada)

Jason Peterson (GoDigital Media Group, U.S.)

Richard Burgess (A2IM, U.S.)

Zena White (Partisan Records, U.S.)

Observer: Tony Kiewel (Sub Pop, U.S.)

Latin America

Francisca Sandoval (IMICHILE, Chile)

Sandra Rodrigues (ABMI, Brazil)

Observer: Alejandro Varela (S-Music, Argentina)

Europe

Dario Draštata (Dallas Records, Croatia)

Gee Davy (AIM, UK)

Geert De Blaere (N.E.W.S., Belgium)

Jörg Heidemann (VUT, Germany)

Mark Kitcatt (Everlasting Records, Spain)

Observer: Helen Smith (IMPALA, Europe)

Asia

Marty Ro (Sound Republica, South Korea)

Takuya Yamazaki (IMCJ, Japan)

Observer: Sridhar Swaminathan (SIMCA, India)

Australasia

Maria Amato (AIR, Australia)

Observer: Dylan Pellett (IMNZ, New Zealand)

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