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Unison granted CISAC membership

By | Published on Thursday 3 December 2020


The new(ish) Spain-based collecting society Unison has been admitted into CISAC, the global organisation for song right collective management organisations. Participation in CISAC gives Unison access to international standard tools and databases, and more formally brings Unison into the global conversation around the evolution of collective rights management.

It also means that Unison is currently the only Spanish society for songwriters and music publishers within the CISAC membership. Spain’s main song rights society SGAE was, of course, temporarily expelled from CISAC in May 2019 after years of criticism over allegations of corruption and mismanagement.

Capitalising on changes to the way collecting societies are regulated across Europe, Unison entered the market to offer songwriters and publishers frustrated by all the controversies surrounding SGAE an alternative option for licensing their rights within Spain and beyond. CISAC membership definitely helps Unison boost its profile and legitimacy in Spain and elsewhere.

One task for any new society is building partnerships with other societies around the world, principally to access the monies those other societies collect from broadcasters, concert promoters and other businesses in their home countries for the use of international repertoire. Unison already has more than 40 agreements with other societies in place, but CISAC membership will likely speed up the process of securing more.

Interestingly, whereas most collecting societies are member-owned, Unison is a privately owned enterprise. CISAC defines such societies as ‘rights management entities’, and Unison is only the second such entity to be granted membership.

Commenting on this latest development, Unison boss Jordi Puy said: “We add this milestone to the long list of pioneering achievements that we have been achieving in recent years, always with the aim of favouring creators in the music sector and offering the best possible service to our customers”.