The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) music industry is undergoing a significant transformation, driven by remarkable growth, global collaborations, streaming services, and a surge of local talent.

In a move poised to further transform the music industry, Dubai Global Music City (DGMC) has partnered with global giant Universal Music Group (UMG) to establish a Music City to make the UAE a regional hub for recording artists and songwriters in the rapidly growing MENA region, aiming to harness their potential for global reach.

This ambitious project marks the debut of Capitol Studios outside Hollywood. The project will bring together numerous recording studios and music schools, live performance spaces, and a joint-venture record label dedicated to launching regional artists onto the global stage.

“The UMG-DGMC partnership’s aim is to support and nurture talented artists and songwriters in the region and help them reach their full creative and commercial potential,” said the companies in a joint statement.

The studios will offer world-class infrastructure for local and international talent, equipped with cutting-edge technology like Dolby Atmos mixing rooms and state-of-the-art recording equipment.

This announcement comes on the heels of UMG’s acquisition of UAE music company Chabaka, which integrated into Virgin Music Group last year. The MENA region is experiencing a music boom, with the IFPI reporting it as the fastest-growing global market in 2021 and the third-fastest (23.8%) in 2022.

Adam Granite, UMG’s Executive VP of Market Development, recognized this potential: “We share their excitement and vision to harness this potential and nurture the next generation of recording artists and songwriters. Our partnership will create a powerful platform for the incredible talent in the region and accelerate their careers at home and abroad.”

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