YouTube, Google’s video streaming service, has hired former Warner Music Group executive Lyor Cohen as its global head of music as it looks to strengthen its relationships with the music industry.
Cohen, a veteran of the music industry, most recently served as the chief executive and co-founder of the 300 Entertainment record label, which currently includes prominent hip-hop artists such as Fetty Wap, Young Thug and Rich the Kid.
Cohen said in a letter to YouTube employees that he would look to help the music community “embrace the technological shifts we’re seeing in music today so we can help take the confusion and distrust out of the equation”.
YouTube has had a contentious relationship with the music industry which has often complained that streaming services do not pay artists enough for their music.
The European Commission is also looking at imposing an obligation on platforms hosting user-uploaded content — such as YouTube, Vimeo and DailyMotion — to seek agreements with rights holders “reflecting the economic value of the use made of the protected content”.
Cohen will continue serving in his role at 300 Entertainment till Dec. 5, according to a YouTube spokesperson. Google, which has previously made an investment in Cohen’s 300 Entertainment, will remain a stakeholder.