Export Development Program (UK/EU)


To expand the reach ad export markets of Saskatchewan music based cultural products.

About the Program

SaskMusic has hired an in-market consultant to assist, promote and develop export-ready Saskatchewan recording artists’ infrastructural development in the UK and Europe.  Services include, but are not limited to, research and introductions to appropriate in-market contacts, writing and formalizing relevant pitches and assistance with logistics, backline rental and immigration.

About the Consultant

Originally from Toronto, Canada, Shain Shapiro has worked in the music industry for over fifteen years, including 3.5 years as the UK and European Representative of the Canadian Independent Music Association.  During this time, he negotiated over 600 business deals for over 300 bands, helping develop the Canadian Blast brand in the UK and Europe.  Before that, he was the UK Press Manager for One Little Indian and FatCat Records.  He is finishing his PhD at Birkbeck, University of London, analysing popular music and public funding and holds an MA from the University of Amsterdam.  He guest lectures at four universities in three countries and has coordinated and/or moderated panels on funding, state involvement in popular music and export development at SXSW, WOMEX, Liverpool Soundcity, Eurosonic, Canadian Music Week and over 20 other festivals and conferences.  He was awarded The Hospital Club and British Council’s h100 award in 2013, making him one of the top Creatives in Britain. He was nominated in the Creative Entrepreneur Category.  He lives in Forest Gate, London and is the Managing Director of Sound Diplomacy, a multi-lingual export, research and event production consultancy based in London, Barcelona and Berlin.


Are you export ready? To be considered export-ready you MUST meet four (4) of the following eight criteria:

  1. At least one commercial release in Canada in the past 24 months or have plans for a commercial release in Canada in the next 6 months;
  2. At least one commercial release that is distributed internationally;
  3. Completed at least one Canadian tour in the past 24 months or have confirmed bookings in the target location;
  4. An established team including at least two of the following: artist manager, record label, booking agent and/or publicist;
  5. Airplay on a published radio chart in the past 24 months;
  6. Public and industry recognition (via video play, web hits and streams, music press, blogs, awards, etc.);
  7. Minimum of 3,000 combined units sold of all recordings released;
  8. Realistic business and marketing plan.

** Note: You must be a current member of SaskMusic to access this program

If you are not eligible for the export ready level of this program but still have questions about the UK and European markets please direct any questions to Program Manager Kaelen Klypak, kaelen@saskmusic.org. As long as you are a current member you can still access the consultant in order to prepare for the steps to reach an export ready level.

Approval Process

The consultant and SaskMusic will review your application to determine export readiness and market potential.

If accepted a meeting will be scheduled between you, the consultant and the program manager to discuss next steps. The consultant will treat each act on a case-by-case basis and provide advice on market preparation to ensure sustainable expansion.

Export Development Program Application