SPOT Festival  |   MXD

Cross-border cooperation can yield great results

 |  Henrik Friis

SPOT On Trading was attended by 65 music professionals from Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, UK, Netherlands, Austria, Sweden, Iceland and Luxembourg.In parallel with the music showcases a new conference jointly developed by SPOT On Denmark, Muziekcentrum Vlaanderen, Wallonie-Bruxelles Musiques and AB took place: SPOT On Trading was attended by 65 music professionals from Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, UK, Netherlands, Austria, Sweden, Iceland and Luxembourg.

Jörg Tresp, director at DevilDuck Records (DE), and Jim Q. Holm, director at Merger Management (DK) shared their experiences from a joint trading project. Subsequently co-founder & manager of the PIAS-owned label 62TV Records Philippe De Coster presented a Belgian label’s point of view on trading, while Maarten Quaghebeur from Belgian management & booking agency Rockoco  presented Glimps, a new trade-friendly showcase festival in Gent.

One of the topics that was heatedly debated was whether or not the origin of an artist plays a vital role in the new digital landscape. Another issue that was discussed was the increasing importance of smaller networking platforms and the one of getting motivated partners to work your product in different territories.

School is Cool and Liège band Dan San performed exclusively during the event.

Among the conference conclusions was that there is still a lot of work to be done on cross-border trading at European level and that mash-ups like the one of Giana Factory & School is Cool are welcome developments in the right direction.

Finally, Brussels-based representatives of the Danish industry exchanged views with a delegation of music professionals during a working meal. The main areas of discussion focused on export and what can music learn for other industries and vice versa. One of the examples that were mooted came from the football industry and suggested that record labels and managements developing new artists could benefit from a fundamental right the same way football clubs that discover new players have. Kristian Nyholm from Fake Diamond Records who attended the meeting commented: “It was inspiring to see people from other business looking into the music biz – no time for pitty – time for action!”

Delegate quotes:

“It’s great to meet people from different countries. This event keeps growing! I had more time to talk to the people during the conference. Always good meet useful contacts.”  – Rense van Kessel (Friendly Fire Agency, The Netherlands).

“I was particularly surprised by Giana Factory’s performance.  This trio has definitely won the hearts of the Brussels audience with their sound that was minimal and lush at the same time, with songs and a stage presence to match.  We will be glad to distribute and promote their upcoming debut album in BENELUX.”
Geert De Blaere (NEWS, Belgium)


“It was definitely a great experience to be able to meet people in this intimate context. The SPOT On Denmark team managed to connect the music business professionals very wisely. This kind of events must exist in parallel to bigger conferences.” – Alexandre Pountzas (Caravelle Productions, France).

” Vinnie Who: A full stage in motion accompanied by energetic disco beats! With multiple hits a solid Danish act that still has the potential to grow bigger.”
“F.U.K.T. were playing a dynamic set, alternating raw and energetic dubstep and drum’n’bass, especially interesting because of the use of live instruments, like the impressive skills of their drummer Anders Meinhardt.”
Arne Dee (Nordic Delight Festival, The Netherlands)


“I think it’s very useful to be able to talk to all these delegates directly. Such a platform can be a door opener. It’s also a nice thing to put these bands together so they can learn from each other.” – Maarten Decock (Keremos/Glimps, Belgium)





“First time for me. Really good arrangement with some good discussions and some great music.”
Stefan Gullberg (EMI Music Publishing, Sweden)


“I think it’s a great to connect people this way. Then it’s also about getting something out of these meetings. I think SPOT makes a good case for it. Jörg Tresp (DevilDuck Records, Germany)