The newly created position will expand and strengthen the company’s scope within African music. She will report directly to Jason Iley, chairman and CEO of Sony Music UK & Ireland.
Mavunga will be responsible for amplifying UK-signed artists across Africa, as well as supporting artists within Africa to develop relationships, identify opportunities and increase visibility within the UK.
She will work in close alignment with Mark Collen, EVP of UK international, the Sony Music UK labels and Sony Music Africa on artist strategy and will be the UK gateway for identifying local talent and opportunities within the region.
Mavunga joined Sony Music as head of publicity for Columbia UK in 2015, where she oversaw press strategy across the label’s roster and spearheaded campaigns for artists including Childish Gambino, Koffee, Wizkid, Davido and Rosalia.
Previously based in Johannesburg, Mavunga was head of talent and music for Viacom Africa working on MTV Base, BET Africa and Nickelodeon channels. She also worked on the 2015 edition of the MAMAs (MTV Africa Music Awards) hosted in Durban. Prior to that, she was at Atlantic Records for more than 15 years and worked on artist campaigns including Ed Sheeran, Jay-Z, Rudimental and Sean Paul.
Taponeswa Mavunga said: “At this moment, when the global cultural landscape is changing so rapidly, I’m excited to play my part in the black cultural renaissance. My passion for Africa and African music is unwavering and I look forward to impactful collaboration and partnerships. I’m grateful to Jason for the vision, that led to the creation of this role. I also thank Ferdy and all of Columbia for five extraordinary years and I’m delighted to continue my work with them and the wider Sony family in this next chapter.”
At this moment, when the global cultural landscape is changing so rapidly, I’m excited to play my part in the black cultural renaissance
Jason Iley said: “Tapi is a passionate, forward thinking executive who has a clear vision for the future. She has incredible relationships with artists and there is no one more suited to represent Sony Music UK in Africa’s accelerating market. Tapi’s first-hand experience of working in African music and entertainment and her enthusiasm to connect artists locally and globally is unmatched.”
Sean Watson, MD, Sony Music Entertainment Africa, said: “Tapi has long been one of the most passionate champions in the UK of our African artists, so to have her working more closely and formally with the African team at Sony Music is fantastic! Tapi understands why bridges between our markets are key to growing the business, whether promoting African artists outside of the continent or helping global artists find new growth opportunities in Africa.”
Mavunga was inducted into the Music Week Women In Music Roll Of Honour in 2018.