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British indie artists to share £300,000 grant

The money comes as part of the Music Export Growth Scheme which has invested £4.3 million since its launch in 2015.

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IDLES will receive funding (Tom Ham/PA)

IDLES will receive funding (Tom Ham/PA)

IDLES will receive funding (Tom Ham/PA)

A total of 20 British indie artists have benefited from a grant of £300,000 in the latest round of a national funding scheme.

The money will be split between the recipients, including Bristol-based punks IDLES, indie rock band Black Country, New Road from London and Belfast-born electronic & techno producer Max Cooper.

The announcement by independent and major labels trade association the BPI comes as part of the Music Export Growth Scheme (MEGS) which has invested £4.3 million since its launch in 2015.

So far returns of over £51 million have been made.

The scheme is run in partnership between industry and the Government and exists to boost British music exports by supporting small to medium-sized music companies looking to grow their profiles internationally.

Our music industry is one of the UK’s strongest cultural and economic assetsMike Freer, Department for International Trade

The 20 artists have been selected as part of the 20th round of the MEGS to reflect the broad diversity of British music across different genres, the BPI said.

Other recipients included Margate electro-pop artist, BABii; R’n’B performer Eloise; jazz-influenced London singer-songwriter Poppy Ajudha; Devon folk-guitarist John Smith; Welsh-born multi-instrumentalist and songwriter The Anchoress; and Scottish goth-glam band Walt Disco.

The BPI said the funding is needed to help the UK maintain its position as the second biggest exporter of recorded music as global competition intensifies.

Mike Freer, Minister for Exports at the Department for International Trade (DIT), said: “Our music industry is one of the UK’s strongest cultural and economic assets.

“Every year countless songs are written in the UK and performed around the world.

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“We want to continue to make the most of the global opportunity to grow British music and DIT is proud to co-fund MEGS with industry to support independent labels and artists.”

Geoff Taylor, chief executive of the BPI, Brit Awards & Mercury Prize, said: “British music faces more intense competition than ever before in a rapidly globalising streaming business.

“MEGS funding allows a broad range of brilliant independent artists – from rap to rock and electro to jazz – to boost their fan bases overseas and grow their global streaming income.

“MEGS is a great investment for the Government, returning 12 times its cost to the economy.

“The time is right for the Government to work with industry to expand it, so that more small British businesses and artists, from all round the country, can capitalise on the surge in streaming.”


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