Bytedance has recently hired a former Tencent Music executive to lead music-related operations for its short video app Douyin, replacing a director of the platform that left in July, media outlet LatePost reported.

How Tencent’s empire is making music pay

Why it matters: Bytedance has been keen to supply original music for short video apps Douyin and TikTok. The company’s deals with major record labels expired in April.

  • Record labels such as Universal Music and Sony Music are demanding higher royalties from Bytedance.
  • In 2018, Douyin rolled out an incentive and support program for independent musicians in China.

Details: Deng Linhai was an operations director at Tencent Music Entertainment (TME). He will lead Douyin’s music business alongside Mou Fei, product manager for the platform’s music business.

  • Prior to joining Bytedance, Deng used to be responsible for providing support for and managing independent musicians for TME.
  • Deng will replace take over from Zhu Jie. Zhu, former director of Douyin’s music business, left the company in July along with music production manager Song Yubin.

Bytedance’s music streaming product is taking shape

Context: In addition to getting more musicians under its belt, Bytedance has also been making moves in the music streaming market.

  • In October, the company launched a domestic online music platform named “Yinyuebang.” The platform contained 26 songs popular created by artists in Douyin’s independent artist support program.
  • Earlier this month, Bytedance started testing a music streaming app named Resso in India and Indonesia. The platform charges users a monthly subscription of $1.7 in India, equal to what Spotify charges in the country.

Tony Xu is Shanghai-based tech reporter. Connect with him via e-mail:

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