Apple sent out letters to record labels today, as reported by Rolling Stone, and said that it “wants to help” in light of the ongoing pandemic that is rocking industries all across the globe. To do that, Apple Music is starting the Royalty Advance Fund, which is initially injected with $50 million.
There are some qualifications that indie labels need to meet before they can qualify for the new fund. The primary one is that independent record labels must make at least $10,000 in quarterly earnings through Apple Music. In addition to that, there must be a direct Apple Music distribution deal already in place as well.
You can read one of the emails in its entirety just below:
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.
Royalty advances will be offered to independent labels with a direct Apple Music distribution deal who meet a minimum quarterly threshold of $10,000 in Apple Music earnings. Each advance will be based on the label’s past earnings, and will be recoupable against the label’s future earnings. This offer is in good faith that labels will channel funds to artists and label operations based on financial need.
Label agreements for the advances will be posted in iTunes Connect, in the Agreements, Tax, and Banking module, on April 10. To receive an advance you will need to accept the Royalty Advance agreement and be on the latest Apple Music distribution agreement before May 8, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. PDT.
We hope that together we can help provide stability for artists by sustaining an enduring and vibrant music sector. If you have additional questions, please contact us.
Thank you and stay safe,
The Apple Music Team
This should be hugely beneficial to indie artists, at least for those who meet the prerequisites.