Kobalt Music has hired Rian Liebenberg as its next Chief Technology Officer (CTO).
Kobalt’s current CTO, Richard Thompson, has decided to step down and will continue to advise as Emeritus CTO.
Liebenberg (pictured) previously served in multiple officer positions at Schibsted ASA and Schibsted Media Group, including Chief Platform Officer and CTO, where he led the platformisation of the business and rapidly scaled up a large engineering, data, UX, and product organisation.
Prior to Schibsted, he founded 3D mapping and location services startup, Recce after having helped set up Google’s European engineering capability while he held various roles from EMEA CIO, to leading AdSense engineering teams, to building out the real-time communication tools, which led to Google Hangouts and the WebRTC standard.
Said Kobalt Founder and CEO, Willard Ahdritz, “Richard has been a part of the Kobalt team since day one. Through his leadership, his team has built the industry leading global platform responsible for taking the music industry into the digital age.
“This very complex innovation was executed brilliantly and for that, I’m very appreciative. I’m equally thankful he will continue to advise me and the management team going forward, as we embark on a new, exciting growth phase of the company.”
“Rian’s unique and successful career in building and scaling technology teams is the exact combination of technology, creative and leadership DNA that Kobalt needs in this next phase of exponential growth.”
Willard Ahdritz, Kobalt
Ahdritz continued: “Kobalt’s industry leadership is attached to our continued innovation in music and technology development to support musicians across the globe. Therefore, I’m very happy to welcome Rian to Kobalt who will help continue our technology leadership, scale our technology team, products and services globally.
“Rian’s unique and successful career in building and scaling technology teams is the exact combination of technology, creative and leadership DNA that Kobalt needs in this next phase of exponential growth. I am confident that Rian’s experience and leadership will play a key role in Kobalt’s future growth.”
Said Liebenberg, “I’m super excited to be joining Kobalt Music. This opportunity ticks all the boxes I value dearly: a passionate, smart and committed team, a tremendous learning opportunity, the ability to help make the music industry a better place for musicians, while helping rapidly building teams, products and the business.”
Kobalt’s Music Publishing, Neighbouring Rights, and Recordings/AWAL divisions serve over 25,000 songwriters, 600 publishers, and 20,000 independent artists, including Childish Gambino, Miles Davis, Dave Grohl, Enrique Iglesias, Lauv, Lorde, Zayn Malik, Bob Marley, Marshmello, Max Martin, Paul McCartney, Elvis Presley, The Weeknd, and many more.Music Business Worldwide