An interview with Ashley Austin, Founder and CEO of Artist Legacy Group:
Why did you start ALG?
I started Artist Legacy Group in 2013 to provide heirs and executors with an estate management option that focuses on proactive IP protection and revenue generation. Estate management is a specialized area of entertainment management and prior to ALG, estates were relatively limited in their choices for representation. I believed they deserved more – it was as simple as that.
While my initial vision for the company was tailored to artist estates, it became clear that our services and approach could be applied to living legends and iconic entertainment properties as well, so we expanded our offerings. We are still a young company, but I pride myself on the fact that we keep our eyes open and adapt to our clients’ evolving needs. As a joint venture with Sony Music Entertainment, ALG has become a home for icons and iconic brands – one where proactivity trumps reliance on inbound traffic.
What is estate management?
The role of an estate manager is to protect and promote an artist’s legacy. Working in conjunction with heirs, executors, attorneys and business managers, we are part of a collective team whose goal is to ensure that an artist’s life’s work continues to thrive in popular culture. We handle the day-to-day responsibilities of overseeing the way intellectual property is licensed, leveraged and monetized.
The legacy of an icon and the assets that exist in their estate – the intellectual property or “IP” – can continue to generate revenue long after they leave us. Realizing the full financial potential of IP is a direct result of how it is represented and promoted. By empowering an experienced management team with the contacts necessary to develop and oversee new projects from inception to fruition, estates can increase their profile as well as their inherent and monetary value over time.
What is brand management?
As brand managers, we work with the client, as well as management, legal and business advisers to oversee the protection and promotion of name and likeness, trademarks and other IP assets. All aspects of an entertainment brand should exist as one cohesive idea, and we work tirelessly to ensure that projects are streamlined to maximize cultural impact and profile whenever possible.
In order to create the framework for our approach to proactively sourcing new opportunities, we first identify the categories our clients would like to explore, and we encourage our clients to be hands-on when it comes to the development of their brand. We help set goals and source select opportunities while working with our global partners to bring innovative ideas and collaborations from concept to market.