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Musicians to double Skiza ringtone revenue in new deal

Musicians will double their earnings from ringtones downloaded by mobile subscribers in a deal that was signed by stakeholders on Monday.

The deal stipulates that rates paid to musicians be increased from the current 7.5 per cent to 15 per cent.

The agreement was signed between Safaricom and collective management organisations, which collect loyalties on behalf of musicians.

They include the Kenya Association of Music Producers (KAMP), Performers Rights Society of Kenya (PRISK), Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK).


Artistes currently earn millions from downloaded ringtones and caller tones, which are popularly referred to as Skiza Tunes.

MCSK Chief Executive Maurice Okoth revealed that artistes will now deal directly with the joint CMO’s for their Skiza tunes earnings.

The move cuts off premium content providers who have been acting as the middle men between musicans and mobile phone firms like Safaricom.

“We have moved the share from 7.5 per cent to 15 per cent and next year, it will be 17 per cent. It will rise to 19 per cent the year after and in the third year, artistes will be earning 20 per cent,” he disclosed.

According to Mr Okoth, artistes will also be paid monthly instead of quarterly or half year basis.


Speaking at the partnership launch, PRISK CEO Angela Ndambuki said that the Digital Rights Management Systems will be a unifying factor among artistes as it will enable them access consolidated data and music from one source.

“By January next year, members will be able to log into our systems to enable them monitor not only Skiza but the other usage like communication to the public and see how much they are getting. We want to be transparent and accountable,” she said.

The signing of agreement was earlier this month postponed after a row among artistes. But they later resolved their differences.