Beggars Group Names New President

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4AD U.S. label manager Nabil Ayers will succeed Matt Harmon as president of Beggars Group’s U.S. operations, the label group announced Tuesday (Jan. 25). Harmon, who has been with Beggars for 24 years, is exiting the company to pursue other opportunities.

The label consortium has also promoted Claire Taylor to the role of general manager.

Ayers has served as U.S. label manager for Beggars Group subsidiary 4AD since 2009. In his absence, Simon Halliday will continue leading 4AD in his role as worldwide managing director.

“We are very grateful to Matt for his contributions over two decades which have brought us such success, but equally excited about Nabil and Claire’s elevations, as we look forward to an even brighter future,” said Beggars Group chairman Martin Mills in a statement.

Ayers is the former co-owner of Seattle’s Sonic Boom Records. As a drummer, he’s performed in bands including The Long Winters and Tommy Stinson. He also has his own record label, The Control Group/Valley of Search, and has written about race and music for outlets including The New York Times, NPR, Pitchfork, Rolling Stone and GQ. His memoir, My Life in the Sunshine, will be published on June 7, 2022 by Viking/Penguin.

“My 13 years at 4AD have prepared me well for a move down the hall, and I am proud to work for a company whose roster and staff are growing more exciting and diverse with each passing year,” said Ayers. “I can’t wait to work more closely with the amazing staff and artists at Matador Records, Rough Trade, XL Recordings, Young, and the 40+ years of Beggars catalog while continuing to work closely with my 4AD family.”

Taylor, who has been with Beggars since 2007, was previously head of product management at the company. “I am thrilled to be stepping into my next role at Beggars,” she said. “Getting to work across a team of such talented staff and inspiring artists is what has made me proud to be a Beggars employee since my first day on the job.”

Last year, Beggars Group – which also houses Matador Records, XL Recordings, Rough Trade and Young – boasted a U.S. market share of 0.49%, up from 0.4% in 2020 and 0.42% in 2019. The label group enjoys a larger share of the album sales market, however, regularly finishing over 2% the past three years and over 1% in most other sales categories. Beggars’ U.S. market share has risen slightly so far this year, to 0.52%. Some of its most popular acts include Big Thief (4AD), Spoon (Matador), Parquet Courts (Rough Trade), Radiohead (XL), FKA Twigs (Young), The National (4AD) and Alabama Shakes (Rough Trade).

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