Independent Music Companies Association

The Independent Music Companies Association (IMPALA), originally the Independent Music Publishers and Labels Association, is a non-profit trade association established in April 2000 to help European independent record labels represent their agenda and promote independent music. Its offices are in Brussels, Belgium. IMPALA's main mission is to grow the independent music sector, along with promotion of cultural diversity, and improving the perceptions of the industry.

IMPALA is a member of the Worldwide Independent Network (WIN), a coalition of independent music bodies from countries throughout the world.


IMPALA was founded in 2000 by national trade associations and key independent labels, as a non-profit organisation dedicated to small and medium-sized enterprises in the music industry.[1]

In 2008 an Action Plan for Music was launched[2] and in 2010 an Action Plan for Finance was published.[3]

In January 2015, IMPALA launched its Digital Action Plan, a ten-point plan calling for a new European industrial policy to drive the digital market through the cultural and creative sectors. The action plan calls on the EU to reinforce copyright, and other key measures, including promoting diversity in a measurable way and devising a new regulatory, competition, social and fiscal framework for smaller actors.[4]

To celebrate IMPALA’s 15th anniversary, from September 2015 various initiatives took place across Europe under the "IMPALA 15" banner, such as the Reeperbahn Festival at Hamburg, Germany.[5]

In March 2016, IMPALA launched a monthly feature to put the spotlight on Europe's most inspiring young independent labels, known as the Young Label Spotlight. On 24 September 2018, Paul Pacifico, CEO of the UK's Association of Independent Music and Michel Lambot , co-founder and Co-President of the PIAS Group, co-represented IMPALA, the body representing European indie record labels, at the expert workshop organised by the Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels (BOZAR), the European Cultural Foundation and the British Council about Brexit and the cultural sector. The goal was "to reaffirm our shared intent and common values, and to produce practical recommendations from the cultural and creative sectors that go beyond those that have already been made", and a list of recommendations was afterwards published on the IMPALA website.[6][7]

As part of its role of representing independent music companies at EU level, IMPALA was involved in the discussions on the EU copyright directive, and is working on competition issues such as Sony's buyout of EMI in 2018, or more recently the sale of Universal Music Group's shares.


As of 2019 IMPALA has over 4000 members, including national associations as well independent music companies as direct members. The Board is elected by its members.[8]

National associations

  • AMAEI (Portugal)
  • AIM (UK)
  • Audiocoop (Italy)
  • BIMA (Belgium)
  • DUP (Denmark)
  • FONO (Norway)
  • HAIL (Hungary)
  • INDIECO (Finland)
  • IndieSuisse (Switzerland)
  • Kobalt Music
  • P.I.L. (Israel)
  • Platforma (Czech Republic)
  • PMI (Italy)
  • RUNDA (Balkans)
  • SOM (Sweden)
  • STOMP (Netherlands)
  • UFI (Spain)
  • UPFI (France)
  • VTM (Austria)
  • VUT (Germany)


IMPALA has three awards schemes: the European Independent Album of the Year Award, the Outstanding Contribution Award and the IMPALA Sales Awards.[9]

European Independent Album of the Year

The European Independent Album of the Year Award winner is selected annually by a jury based on artistic merit alone from a nominated shortlist of albums released by a European independent label in the relevant year. Winners include:

Outstanding Contribution Award

This annual award recognises the efforts of an individual or organisation, in promoting and developing European independent music and the diversity of the sector. Winners include:

Sales awards

IMPALA intends these Awards to provide a tool for independent music companies and artists to promote themselves, both domestically and internationally. Winners include:


  1. "About". IMPALA. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  2. "Action plan for music". IMPALA. Archived from the original on 12 March 2012.
  3. "Action plan for finance". IMPALA. [dead link]
  4. "IMPALA's Digital Action Plan". IMPALA. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  5. "IMPALA elects new Board and celebrates 15th anniversary at Reeperbahn Festival". IMPALA. 24 September 2015. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  6. "IMPALA supports key Brexit recommendations for cultural sectors". IMPALA. 2 October 2018. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  7. "Brexit and the Cultural Sector". European Network of Cultural Centres. 17 October 2018. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  8. "IMPALA members". IMPALA. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  9. "IMPALA Awards".
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