Sony Music India Appoints New Head of A&R, Signs Rapper Raftaar

Sony Music India (SMI) has appointed Jagjit Singh Bhogal as its head of A&R, as New York-headquartered Sony Music Entertainment (SME) seeks to flesh out new regional hubs in Asia and the Middle East to better connect with local markets.

Bhogal comes to SMI after stints at Viacom18 India, where he led the A&R, music IP and music content business for MTV India. In that role, he brought a number of music-driven TV shows into the country, including “MTV Unplugged,” “Coke Studio,” “Sound Trippin’” and “Spoken Word.”

The hire will “further strengthen the company’s position in the rapidly growing independent music market across multiple Indian languages,” SMI’s managing director Rajat Kakar said.

In January, SME restructured its reporting structure to create regional hubs in Asia and the Middle East that report back to U.S. Longtime Asia exec Denis Handlin was shifted to focus solely on Australia and New Zealand, while veteran Sony Music India exec Shridhar Subramaniam was appointed to the newly created role of president of strategy and market development for Asia and the Middle East, overseeing those regions from New York.

Andrew Chan was named managing director of Sony’s business in China, Taiwan and Hong Kong, while Joseph Chang was set to continue managing Korea and Ariel Fung was appointed executive vice present of SME Southeast Asia.

SMI has also announced an exclusive recording agreement with local rapper Raftaar, as well as a partnership with Kalamkaar, the independent label founded by him and his business partner Ankit Khanna. The partnership will bring to SMI a roster of young rappers and artists including Deep Kalsi, Rashmeet Kaur and Yunan.

Partnering with Raftaar “helps us continue to play a key role in showcasing India’s young music talent both here and abroad,” Kakar said.

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