Per Sundin

CEO, Pophouse Entertainment

Per Sundin

Per Sundin is CEO of the Stockholm, Sweden-headquartered Pophouse Entertainment.

He previously served as President of Universal Music Nordic.

In 2022, in the Netflix biopic The Playlist, he was depicted as one of the key architects of the launch of Spotify in Sweden in 2008.

Per Sundin: Career history

Per Sundin got his start in entertainment in 1995 when he secured a managerial position at TV-4 Gruppen.

He would eventually assume their Head of Entertainment role, hiring famous hosts including Kristian Luuk and Martin Timell.

With these hirings, Sundin started the shows Sen Kvall, a talk show, and Antligen Hemma, a home improvement show. Sen Kvall garnered the most commercial success, becoming one of Sweden’s most popular talk shows ever with nearly 1.5 million viewers per week. The show featured notable guests including Whitney Houston, Cher, Janet Jackson, and Madonna.

Sundin remained with TV-4 until 1998.

After leaving TV-4, Sundin moved to Sony Music Entertainment in Sweden to serve as the company’s local Managing Director.

He held the MD role at Sony through several company restructurings due to the Sony BMG merger and general Sony Nordic organizational changes.

In his MD role at Sony, Sundin was responsible for guiding the company’s managers and ensuring the efficient operation of its many divisions.

After nearly ten years at Sony, Sundin moved to Universal Music Nordic to become Managing Director of Universal Music Sweden and President of UMG Nordic.

As President of UMG Nordic, the MDs of other country’s operations reported to him.

Sundin departed UMG in late-2019, concurrent with a near-total restructuring of the company’s Nordic division.

After UMG Nordic’s new executive team was unveiled, Pophouse Entertainment announced Sundin would become their new CEO.

He was also announced as UMG Nordic’s Non-Executive Chairman, a new role at the company.

As Pophouse Entertainment’s CEO, Sundin’s priority has been expanding the company beyond live events.

Pophouse Entertainment was founded in 2014 by Bjorn Ulvaeus, a founding ABBA member, and Conni Jonsson, the founder of EQT Partners.

At the time of his hiring, Pophouse’s main ventures included creating live events promoting the ABBA brand and other brand partners.

These events have included the Pophouse Hotel, a dinner show focused on Mamma Mia, the ABBA Museum, and the Cirkus concert and event venue.

Since then, Sundin has expanded Pophouse into podcasts, gaming, entertainment IP rights, and venture investments. One of the notable projects that Sundin pioneered is the Avicii Experience, an interactive museum in Stockholm.

Sundin is currently focused on music catalog investments.

In March 2022, Pophouse acquired the publishing and recording catalog of Swedish House Mafia.

Pophouse is home to the widely acclaimed stage show, ABBA Voyage.

Per Sundin: Professional philosophy

In a podcast interview with Music Business Worldwide in 2022, Per Sundin said: “I was very much at the forefront of [the music industry] going over to streaming, not because I was especially smart, or intelligent, it was more that I was desperate. Because the old business model was falling down, and especially in Sweden people thought it was their right to illegally download music.

“Now we have to accept that music is not a product business anymore. It’s a brand business, it’s name and likeness; it’s all about that now.

“Really smart people work at Universal [Music Group] – I think Lucian [Grainge] hires the best people there is. But the best and smartest of [these people] are working on frontline, working with signing new artists, and that’s really a challenge right now. Because the [bigger] money and the assets are in their catalogs; Universal, Warner, and Sony all have fantastic catalog products.”

“I think that the smartest people in the record companies will soon start working in the catalog departments.”

Per Sundin

He added: “Eighty percent of the listening at Spotify in the US is [of music that is] older than two years. And the tough thing now [for new artists] is to break through the noise. How do you cut through the noise and get into a new playlist?

“That’s why I think that the smartest people in the record companies will soon start working in the catalog departments, and seeing these assets in a different way: ‘How can we help expose this fantastic catalog, these golden nuggets, that can be amplified for a new audience?’”Music Business Worldwide

Per Sundin In The News

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