Nacional Records Chief Launches Industria Works, 'An Alternative Platform for Artist Development': Exclusive

Billboard

Latin indie guru Tomas Cookman will head Industria Works, a new international "alternative platform for artist development" launching today (Sept. 12), Billboard has learned exclusively.

Based in Los Angeles, where Cookman runs the storied Latin alternative label Nacional Records and his Cookman management company, Industria Works will also have offices in Madrid and Mexico City. The new company encompasses recording, publishing, artist management, marketing, live events and data analytics, with a suite of services designed "to expand the reach of its artists and clients on a local and global level."

Cookman says that Industria Works will "help define what today's music market is and be part of it.

"I have long felt that there was a need for a company like Industria Works," adds Cookman, whose Latin Alternative Music Conference (LAMC) has done much to expand the definition of Latin music in the United States in both the Latino and Anglo markets over the last 16 years. "One that can be independent but have the infrastructure and vision to go that much further than has been the norm."

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Rob Filomena, co-founder of MuuseMe, a music licensing service that focuses on connecting independent Latin artists with multinational brands, has joined Industria Works as CFO.

Investment banker and frequent music start-up advisor Frank Gelardin will act as Chairman of the Board of Industria Works. The new company is backed by a group of international investors led by Gelardin's New York-based Gelardin Capital together with Madrid-based Springwater Capital.

"Our team was particularly impressed by the network and recognition this management team enjoys across a wide number of regions and target markets" Springwater Managing Partner Martin Gruschka said in a statement.

The Industria Works platform launches initially with Nacional Records, Avenir Music Publishing, MuuseMe, Industria Management, LAMC, Los Angeles festival Supersonico, and Trenderscope, which tracks Spanish and Portuguese-speaking artists' digital and social media impact. Those entities will continue to operate independently under the Industria Works umbrella.

According to Cookman, Industria Works "will continue growing, incorporating additional companies and catalogues that fit within the company's strategy and objectives.

"Nacional Records will very much exist -- and will grow by leaps and bounds" Cookman says, adding that "expanding the management division is very much a part of the plan."