Rights Holders' Assembly 2017: Delegates’ election and projection for a record year 2016

09. May 2017. 

In line with its usual schedule - GVL’s Rights Holders’ Assembly took place last Friday, 5th of May 2017, in Berlin.  327 GVL rights holders voted directly and 712 rights holders via proxy to elect 22 delegates from a pool of 52 candidates.  With this election, the previous Board members were replaced by the new delegates in their capacity as rights holders’ representatives.  They jointly represent the interests of all rights holders together with the associates of GVL in the new Associates’ and Delegates’ Assembly.  Furthermore, a record level in terms of collections for 2016 was announced - projected to be well in excess of EUR 200m for the first time.

  Christoph Petras

(from left to right: Gerald Mertens, Dr. Tilo Gerlach, Dr. Florian Drücke, Dr. Carsten Brosda, Guido Evers, Prof. Christian Höppner) © Christoph Petras / GVL

The individual group assemblies elected their respective representatives in the categories producers and artists. Fifteen previous Board members had their positions as delegates confirmed. Seven GVL rights holders were newly elected to the GVL Board. “We would like to thank all 24 Board members for the faithful and also long-term engaged collaboration in the past years. GVL Managing Directors Guido Evers and Dr. Tilo Gerlach stated: “The Board has accompanied a unique change process in the history of GVL since the last Rights’ Holders’ Assembly in February 2014 in order to actively shape the future in the interests of its rights holders and based on the changed circumstances.” A sad occasion was also marked accordingly: Frank Dostal, who had been a GVL Board member for more than 24 years as representative of artistic producers had suddenly passed just shortly before the Assembly.

The Managing Directors also reported in detail on the new legal basis of GVL: the requirements of the new Collecting Societies Act (VGG) which have also been reflected accordingly in the amended Articles of Association. The new provisions basically imply the following for GVL rights holders: more involvement, more transparency and a new committee structure. The latter is particularly represented by a new joint Associates’ and Delegates’ Assembly. The previous delegation of Board members by Associates is no longer possible, all delegates are now freely elected by the rights holders. Delegates have additional competences and jointly take all fundamental decisions together with Associates in the new committee, particularly on the administrative conditions and distribution plans.

The elections were directed by Prof. Christian Höppner, President of the Deutsche Kulturrat (German Cultural Council), Secretary General of the Deutsche Musikrat (German Music Council) and GVL rights holder as a cellist.

Dr. Carsten Brosda, Kultursenator (Senator of Culture) of the Free Hanseatic City of Hamburg held the opening speech: “Especially in times of change it is good to see that the industry has built structures and maintains relationships based on solidarity. The initiated reorganisation of GVL which goes well beyond today's e-voting, should be welcomed. In general the focal point of the entire creative industries must remain to improve basic parameters; more specifically, it should remain paramount that intellectual property rights must not be challenged.”

After the elections, the Managing Directors presented GVL’s financial developments in the last years and provided some insight into financial year 2016 the audit of which has not been concluded yet. GVL expects record collections for 2016, which are likely to significantly surpass the EUR 200m mark for the first time. The number of rights holders that have entrusted GVL with their neighbouring rights has increased from 147,035 in 2015 to 149,428 in the end of 2016.

The Managing Directors elaborated: “At the same time, GVL is also undergoing a fundamental modernisation and restructuring process in technological and organisational terms with the aim to comply with the demands of digitisation and to become one of the most modern and advanced service companies - also compared to other collecting societies on an international level.  In doing so, GVL has already achieved a lot, but as is the case with each change, some initial teething issues must be overcome.”

Delegate Rights holders' group
Christian Balcke (re-elected) other orchestras
Clemens Bieber (re-elected) solo singers
Hans Reinhard Biere (re-elected) broadcasters’ orchestras/choirs
Tonio Bogdanski, Universal Music Entertainment GmbH (re-elected) producers of sound recordings
Dr. Nils Bortloff, Universal Music Entertainment GmbH (re-elected) producers of sound recordings
Philipp von Esebeck, Sony Music Entertainment Germany GmbH (newly-elected) producers of sound recordings
Dr. Stephan Frucht (re-elected) conductors
Günther Gebauer (re-elected) studio musicians
Jörg Glauner, Warner Music Group Germany Holding GmbH  (re-elected) producers of sound recordings
Rob Gruschke, Beggars Group Ltd. (newly-elected) producers of sound recordings
Andreas Klöpfel, Warner Music Group Germany Holding GmbH  (re-elected) producers of sound recordings
Ekkehard Kuhn, Sony Music Entertainment Germany GmbH (re-elected) producers of sound recordings
Felix Partenzi (re-elected) directors (except music directors) and authors of music video clips
Florian Richter (newly-elected) music directors and artistic producers   
Jens Rose, Beat Box GmbH (newly-elected) producers of sound recordings
Birgit Schmieder (newly-elected) instrumental soloists and feat. performer (classical music)   
Thomas Schmuckert (re-elected) actors
Frank Spilker (newly-elected) instrumental soloists and feat. performer (pop music)   
Detlev Tiemann (re-elected) choir singer in other choirs and dancer   
Ronny Unganz (re-elected) event organisers
Till Valentin Völger (re-elected) actors and artistic performers
Dr. Henning Zimmermann, Universal Music Entertainment GmbH (newly-elected) music video clip producer