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NME and Uncut sold off to Singapore-based music tech company


By Rebecca Stewart, Trends Editor

May 17, 2019 | 3 min read

Little over a year since culling its print edition, NME publisher TI Media has sold the title to Singapore-based 'music creation platform' BandLab Technologies, along with rock magazine Uncut.

Lewis Capaldi on the homepage of the NME website

TI media said it was "anticipated" that all NME and Uncut staff would transfer with the sale / NME

The financial sum of the deal wasn't disclosed. It includes both brands’ social, digital, print and experiential assets.

TI media said it was "anticipated" that all NME and Uncut staff would transfer with the sale and would continue to be based in its London HQ, adding that there would be no interruption to Uncut’s publishing schedule.

BandLab Technologies' flagship product is its BandLab app, which allows musicians to edit music on the go, collaborate with other artists and share their songs with friends. The company says it's buying the quintessentially British NME to "grow out a major global music media business."

The brands will join BrandLab's media division which already includes and MusicTech. Founder, Meng Kuok, said he was "especially pleased" to be welcoming an experienced and knowledgeable editorial and commercial staff, who could help "deliver cutting-edge and opinion-driven content for music lovers everywhere."

Marcus Rich, chief executive, TI Media, said: “NME and Uncut will always have a special place in our story. Their reputation for stand-out, award-winning journalism spanning seven decades goes well beyond the world of music and I’m proud they’ve attained that status as part of our company.

“At the same time, we need to recognise that to achieve the next stage of their evolution, NME and Uncut will be better placed with a business that has music at its heart. Under BandLab Technologies’ ambitious ownership and direction, I’m confident both of these truly iconic brands will thrive.”

The sale comes some 12 months after TI Media rebranded from its previous guise of Time Inc, following its acquisition by private equity firm Epiris LLP in March.

The publisher boasts around 40 magazine titles including Marie Claire UK, Woman and Now, claims to reach 16.4 million people each month. Amid declining print revenues it was forced to shutter women's glossy Look last year.

In 2017, the business cut 300 jobs as part of a radical restructure.

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